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SAPS-9D Structured Problem Solving Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by [deleted]

This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.


Using 9 steps from root cause to permanent solution.

By unders­tanding the concept and discip­lines of SAPS and the method­ology and tools that can be implem­ented, problems can be quickly dealt with. The key is to recognize the importance of team selection (the required skills of individual roles within the team to achieve effective teamwork) and the need for transp­arency (in all affected areas of the business) of data collec­tion, and how this analysis leads to the logic of decisi­on-­making.

Step 1: Establish the Team

● Roles & respon­sib­ilities
● Knowledge & authority
● Management commitment & leadership
● Clarity of objectives & team ownership


Step 2: Describe the Problem

Understand how to establish a problem profile
● Involv­ement of the customer
● Time-line graphing
● Process definition & data collection through the use of the seven quality tools

Step 3: Process risk

Contai­nment Action
● Action planning
● Testing decisions
● Time-s­cales
● Protecting the

Step 4: Define & Verify Root Cause

Define & Verify Root Cause for Occur & Escape – Brains­torming
● The 5 Whys
● Ishikawa diagrams
● Testing decisions
● Verifi­cation techniques
● Trials in the organi­sation
● Root Cause Paths
● Answering key questions

Step 5 – Select Permanent Corrective Action

Decision making, the assessment of the criteria & the risks ● Identify criteria for givens and wants
● Generate altern­atives
● Risk analysis

Step 6: Implement Permanent Corrective Action

Implem­ent­ation planning
● Protecting the plan
● Contin­gency planning
● Process monitoring
● Formal­izing changes

Step 7: Prevent Recurrence

Changes to management systems
● Operating systems & procedures
● Commun­ica­tions
● Identi­fic­ation of opport­unities for improv­ement
● Celebr­ation, the importance of recogn­izing collective achiev­ement

Step 8: Capture Process Improv­ement Opport­unities

Capture Process Improv­ement Opport­unities – Identify changes, reinfo­rce­ments & improv­ements
● Review recomm­end­ations
● Coordinate necessary actions
● Implement the improv­ement plan & evaluate the results
● Link validated improv­ement results to the product develo­pment process

Step 9: Learning Points & Congra­tulate Team

Recognise the Team’s collective Problem Solving efforts
● Review lessons learned
● Ensure implem­ent­ation has occurred
● Determine approp­riate recogn­ition for the Team