Corrective Action for Operators Not Following Documentation



corrective action

During our last corrective action team meeting , we found that around 60% of the quality problems were due to the operators not inspecting the parts as per the control plan given to them. What should be done in such cases? Inspite of numerous training programmes and warnings, we found that this situation is not improving. any suggestions?

M Greenaway

I suggest you do a '5 Why' analysis on the inspection process to determine root cause.

If the inspectors are just plain negligent (possible but doubtful) then you would need to take disciplinary action, however I would suspect that you find a problem somewhere with the system.

If on the other hand you actually want to improve quality try to determine the causes of the actual faults and eliminate them, as you cannot inspect quality into the product.


The quality problems could have been identified if the operator had checked the components at the frequency of 10 pieces / hour as required by the control plan.

In one case the operator had not taken out the end bits that was found in the production batch inspite of us providing a sensor that STOPS the machine if there is not sufficient material to feed the bar to the required length.

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
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I don't know enough about the problem to comment in depth, but Martin's idea is a good one. I would also say you could try throwing the problem back at those believed to be "at fault". Tell them the problem, the consequences of the problem to the rest of the process or the customer or money/time lost or whatever, and then ask them how they propose to eliminate this problem. Sometimes this works and you find some solutions you would not have considered and you get more buy-in.

David Hartman

Perhaps you need to go back to the operators and explain to them what you have observed, and ask them why they are not performing the inspections according to the control plan.

You may find such system issues as: Unrealistic production quotas that do not allow time for inspection, inefficient inspection methods/tooling, or any number of issues attributable to the system and not the workers.

I continue to believe that a worker will do the right things, if the system allows.;)

Al Dyer

Sounds like root cause has not been adequately determined.

How about getting away from the operator for the moment and think about why training, write-ups, discipline have not worked?

Are instructions posted?
Have the instructions been tested for ease of use?
Is the level of supervision on the floor adequate?
Is final quality responsibility with manufacturing or quality?
Are there language or dialect problems?
Are there ongoing tests of operator capabilities?
Does management really care?
Are you using the correct tools to determine process capability?
Is the gage control system robust and proven?


Just wanted to get the gist of my view across.

Andrei Viorel - 2009

Did you try to apply The Golden Rules of Gemba KAIZEN?

ISO Cheesy

Sounds like this is a recurring issue if I’m reading it right. What did your follow up from previous CARs tell you? Was the training/ warnings prior corrective action? Sounds like you need to dig a bit deeper. To Al Dyer’s point:

Why people don’t perform:
Improper Instructions
Improper Tools
Improper Training
Lost Expectations

Now I have a question on corrective action and the ISO2000 standard.” A documented procedure shall be established to define req. for…..Para e) records of the results of action taken (see 4.2.4)”

Does this mean that the follow up is now the quality record? I have a separate report for follow up to try to stay away from the check box of “effective”
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Review your CAR,the corrective action is available and which be performed fully.
The corrective action meeting is day-by-day,operators have enough training time?and what is the trend?
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