Root Cause Analysis when someone simply stops performing a task?

ISO_Man

Involved In Discussions
#1
I have a situation where I was auditing an internal team that was supposed to audit their work monthly. It seems that the manager responsible (no longer with the company) simply stopped doing it about 6 months before leaving. It's obviously an audit finding, but what's the root cause when someone simply stopped doing their job... and they're no longer available to explain why?

Thoughts?
 
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William55401

Quite Involved in Discussions
#2
Think about root cause 2 ways. 1. What was the cause of the defect? 2. Why was the defect not detected? You may not find the answer to the first question. The second question involves asking the former manager's + 1.
 

Al Rosen

Staff member
Super Moderator
#3
I have a situation where I was auditing an internal team that was supposed to audit their work monthly. It seems that the manager responsible (no longer with the company) simply stopped doing it about 6 months before leaving. It's obviously an audit finding, but what's the root cause when someone simply stopped doing their job... and they're no longer available to explain why?

Thoughts?
I have more questions than answers.
Why did it take more than 6 months to discover this? Why was he "auditing" their work monthly? Did he issue reports on the result of his "audit"? How did his neglect affect the results of the process? Maybe it was not necessary.

I can speculate on why he stopped. He was planning to leave.
 

ISO_Man

Involved In Discussions
#4
I have more questions than answers.
Why did it take more than 6 months to discover this? Why was he "auditing" their work monthly? Did he issue reports on the result of his "audit"? How did his neglect affect the results of the process? Maybe it was not necessary.

I can speculate on why he stopped. He was planning to leave.
thanks but I need to write a realistic RCA and "I don't know why he stopped" doesn't do the trick.
 

Sidney Vianna

Post Responsibly
Staff member
Admin
#5
Nobody should be doing RCA for the sake of doing RCA. RCA is just one step towards the real goal of preventing recurrence. If the "self audit" activity is really important, the monthly results should be mandatorily shared with his/her line manager. The problem would have been uncovered after 1 month and not 6 months later. On the other hand, this exercise may have shown that the self audits were totally useless, by the simple fact they were not performed/reported for half a year and nobody noticed.....:naughty:
 

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource
#6
The root cause of him stopping is likely unknown and unknowable, all you could do is speculate, so say so. The contributing cause of no one noticing you may have more luck with.
 

Tagin

Trusted Information Resource
#7
I have a situation where I was auditing an internal team that was supposed to audit their work monthly. It seems that the manager responsible (no longer with the company) simply stopped doing it about 6 months before leaving. It's obviously an audit finding, but what's the root cause when someone simply stopped doing their job... and they're no longer available to explain why?

Thoughts?
It might be helpful to rephrase this in terms of process: what is the root cause when this process simply stops being performed?

This gets us out of the realm of psychology and blame, and into the realm of systems and processes.

From a PDCA perspective, it seems clear (as has already been pointed out) that Check (monitoring/measuring) was probably missing or inadequate, and/or perhaps, whatever process was supposed to be monitoring these audit results did not Act once they realized they were no longer receiving the audit results. (Again, as has been pointed out, maybe they didn't act because the info was pointless to being with, and so they were fine with its absence, but that's (mostly) psychology and not process.) Looking into the 'whys' for whichever (or both) of those proximal cause(s) would be the next step in my RCA.
 
Last edited:

Ninja

Looking for Reality
Trusted Information Resource
#9
Root cause = "unknown, we speculate negligence by a disgruntled employee no longer at the company."

Now go fix the problem...that's the important part...
 
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