Improvement Strategies

Many different Promises

Condition Based Maintenance CBM, Failure Mode Effect and Criticality Analysis FMECA, Critical Incident Reporting CRI, Fault Tree or Event Tree Analysis FTA/ETA, First Order Reliability Methods FORM, Hazard and Operability Study HAZOP, IBEC – IQNet Business Excellence Class, ISO 9000, ISO 14000, ISO 16940, Monte Carlo Simulation MC, Offshore Reliability Database OREDA, Preventive Maintenance, Risk Based Maintenance RBM, Reliability-centered Maintenance RCM, ROM Results Oriented Maintenance, Root Cause Analysis, Six Sigma, Total Preventive Maintenance, Total Productive Maintenance TPM

Improvement Strategies and Zero Defect Management

There are many policies. How do they fit into our concept of Zero Defects Management ZDM?

Sporadic Loss Events

Our ZDM mainly is directed against “Sporadic Loss Events”. They occur incidentally.

  • at unpredictable moments (not periodically and not only after a certain period of time)
  • at locations or spots that can neither be predicted nor be derived from the loss history
  • with the same chance everywhere in the entire company (being controlled by identical Basic Risk Factors)
  • and are frequently triggered by human errors and faults

Root Cause Analysis

All methods that rightly bear the title “Root Cause Analysis” RCA lead to the real causes of errors with thorough error analyses.

  •  However, many Root Cause Analyses focus only on the one  individual defect being analyzed, trying to find and eliminate its individual root cause(s). This strategy presumes that the defect analyzed is or will be a “Chronic Defect”.
  •  Our ZDM, however, collects root causes of several different defects in order to find and eliminate their common “Basic Risk Factors”. We this way fight the chances that the same Basic Risk Factors provoke both, Chronic and Sporadic Defects. (the latter represent the majority mostly).

Capability to predict possible human errors

Most of the policies mentioned below however  generally are unable to reliably predict all possible human errors and faults; and they presume to be applied at predetermined spots, which are considered either to be faulty or risky:

They can be useful. However, please, keep in your mind that these loss events, that can individually be determined, represent a minority only of all loss events.


Certifications generally analyze the input (effort of the organization): To this category belong:

There they can be quite useful. Remember, however, that individually targeted and targetable disorders represent the minority of all disorders.

Look also into my comparison of these entirely different approaches.


    TPM, like Zero Defect Management, aims to change the culture in the company in favor of rigorous quality awareness. This aims in the same direction as our Zero Defect Management, although in a different way.

    TPM delegates responsibility for quality “management” to the operators (usually “workers on the ground”) of the processes. However, I fear that suggestions or criticism of management, which in TPM comes from these people, is not taken sufficiently seriously by management.

    Total Productive Maintenance delegates quality Management to the shop floor. It tries to change the entire culture to concentrate on perfect quality, not accepting any loss at all. This goal is very similar to my Zero Defects Management. However I choose a different way to reach the same goal. 

    Therefore, TPM would gain considerable additional thrust if it were supplemented with zero defect management.

    This rather comprehensive approach is being promoted by


    Offshore Reliability Database OREDA resembles to my Defect Standard, is however much more detailed.

    Critical Incident Reporting CIR

    Critical Incident Reporting CIR is again only a recording routine of events that either triggered or could have triggered incidents (in the broadest sense) (near misses). It does not include a sufficiently thorough analysis of the several different triggers and their real causes (root causes).

    Six Sigma

    To Six Sigma I have devoted an own page in this website.


    [Arno Koch: I have added Monozukuri since I am sure mr Grothus would have wanted have me to do so]