Can Training be used as Preventative Control on FMEA?



I have heard a couple of differing views on this and wondered what everyone else thinks.

Yes proper training can lower the occurence of a problem but is it really a control ?????

The reason I am asking is that one supplier has submitted this as there sole control on a process (I know that makes detection a 10)

Another question is calibration a detection or prevention control for FMEA (if a control at all ??)
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Rob Nix

Well, this is interesting.

Establishing a procedure (e.g. daily maintenance) is sometimes a control that is added to improve detection or reduce occurrence. Sometimes training and skills are utilized in lieu of a procedure (e.g. a skilled machinist knows he must deburr an edge). Therefore, training could be a factor in increasing the chances of detecting a failure, or reducing the probability of a failure occurring.

HOWEVER, There would then have to be controls to, 1) ensure the training takes place, 2) ensure the training is effective, and 3) ensure 1 & 2 take place every time personnel change. Would that require a new procedure?

The best controls in an FMEA are preventive ones, and training is never a preventive measure.

So then, training by itself is always good - but will it GUARANTEE lower risk in an FMEA? Hmmm. It'll be interesting to hear from others on this.
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Tom W

Living the Dream...

Rob Nix said:
The best controls in an FMEA are preventive ones, and training is never a preventive measure.
What is your basis of saying training is never a preventive action? What is it then?

I do agree however that training alone is not going to lower an RPN as much (if at all) as systematic controls in place will. In fact training alone might (as stated) cause the RPN to actually go up if not utilized along with controls.

Al Dyer

Wouldn't training be a requirement and provided even if a FMEA was not performed? Is not training an "assumed" condition and not one enacted? On a FMEA I could put under prevention that we intend to put a roof on the factory to assure that rain does not affect the product, but I think that any customer would expect the roof to already be in place as a part of doing business.



Quite Involved in Discussions
Hello Al,
put a roof on the factory to assure that rain does not affect the product

Not unless you want to test the product against leakages. :confused: ..........just joking Al........but I agree with you.
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The Taz!

Quite Involved in Discussions
IMHO, I can see training being included as a part of a preventive action or measure on an PFMEA. This would come into play where a correction was implemented that required some type of training, and other similar processes were reviewed, and training performed in other areas or processes also.



Thanks guys.

Tack I took was that training wasn't a preventative, could only be used as a corrective action to address causes that operators weren't trained on use of equipment or inspections etc.
Also if that was the case then matrix should be drawn up allowing only trained operators to run process and that the training should be evaluated to ensure effectiveness etc.

Bill Ryan - 2007

Boing said:
Another question is calibration a detection or prevention control for FMEA (if a control at all ??)
Good question - I guess it could be either. From my point of view, it would be a "prevention control" if it is used to address a Failure Cause. On the flip side - it would be a "detection control" if it used to address a Failure Mode.

FWIW - I normally don't like to see "Training" as a control on a PFMEA. It just doesn't seem to address a "Root Cause" very well. I prefer to address training "stuff" in the Control Plan.


BTW - Welcome to the Cove :bigwave:

Al Dyer

I used to love it when a supplier would submit a CAR with training as a root cause, I would almost salivate because I realized I had found a path for any pent up frustrations.:lol:

Seriously, I have used training as a root cause, not blaming an operator but putting the blame on the faults in the training program. In the real world people make mistakes, even trained ones. In these cases I found it beneficial to call the person who issued the CAR and discuss the matter. In any case, I was always working in the B3 stream which meant not only the companies had different "rules" but individual plants within companies had varying "rules".


I was very amused when i browsed through this thread. The hair on my arms raise if the words "operator training" are part of a 8D of CAR regardless if it is listed as root-cause or corrective action.

Indeed it can be considered that lack of operator training caused the mistake, but it can't certainly be the root cause. If it is the case that it is due to an operator mistake that the defect was caused, than please bear in mind that this only could happen due to mistakes made in the design and engineering process of the product/operating process. To find out where it all went wrong to me is the real root cause.

Now if you tell me that operator training is going to be an action to reduce RPN's in an FMEA, my pants fall down! This goes against all improvement philosophies i've ever heard of. How about mistake proffing, error proofing, poke yoke and Tools like FMEA's, controlplans, 8D's, are all based on the foundation that the human factor should be ruled out of the product development and manufacturing process as much as possible.

Bottom line: As a customer (yes, i read my suppliers FMEA's and controlplans if i evaluate a PPAP file or corrective action report) i will never accept that.

I rest my case.

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