Published 30 Nov 2022
What is FMEA?
Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) is a systematic method of anticipating potential failures in business processes and mitigating their impact on customers. An FMEA usually starts with a brainstorming session composed of an experienced team and ends with a re-analysis of failure risks after corrective actions have been applied. Ultimately, FMEAs can help prevent costly manufacturing failures, improve product and service reliability, and increase customer satisfaction.
An FMEA template aims to identify potential problems in a process, product or design and prevent their adverse effects on customers. Monitor the implementation and effectiveness of corrective actions with the use of this template. Our featured FMEA template enables your team to easily perform the following:
- Describe the process function
- Identify the mechanism of failure
- Determine the RPN
- Create and complete corrective actions
- Validate the FMEA with digital signatures
In this article
- Types of FMEA
- What is an FMEA Template?
- FMEA Success Factors
- SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor) as your FMEA Tool
- Top 3 FMEA Templates
Types of FMEA
While there are a variety of FMEA types, all follow the same principles—focusing on detection, elimination, and/or mitigation of critical risk events. The 2 most common types of FMEA are:
- Design FMEA (DFMEA)
DFMEA or Design FMEA is applied during the early or end stage of product design. It aims to uncover potential failures associated with product design that could result in risks to health and safety, financial stability, and the environment.
- Process FMEA (PFMEA)
PFMEA or Process FMEA is done prior to the start-up of a new process or an existing process. It aims to discover risks associated with process changes that can negatively impact product quality, process reliability, customer satisfaction, public safety, and the environment.
What is an FMEA Template?
An FMEA template (or FMEA form) is used by product design or process improvement teams to determine the risk priority number (RPN) of the mechanism of equipment or process failures and monitor the corrective actions delegated to key personnel. Using specific FMEA templates such as a design FMEA template or a process FMEA template can help easily determine more potential failures at the onset and prevent avoidable losses in manufacturing operations.
FMEA Success Factors
To achieve optimum results from FMEAs, it should be done correctly—performed on the correct parts, by the correct team, in the correct time frame, and with the correct procedure. Here are the essential ingredients for success in implementing FMEAs:
Proper Identification of the Mechanism of Failure
Key information such as the functions (process step or input) should be available before conducting meetings and visible during brainstorming. The mechanism of failure (potential failure modes, effects, and causes) can be identified properly when FMEA teams account for past failures, agree upon certain assumptions, and establish ground rules. Inviting customers and suppliers is a good idea to help gather alternative viewpoints.
Accurate Computation of RPN
The RPN is used to prioritize the potential failures that require additional quality planning. It is the product of the numerical severity, occurrence, and detection ratings. Determine the RPN accurately by following the guide below:
As a rule of thumb, FMEA teams should focus their improvement efforts on potential failures at the top 20% of the highest RPNs. These high-risk failure modes should be addressed through effective and executable action plans.
Regular Monitoring of Corrective Actions
Companies usually fail to mitigate the adverse effects of failures because they neglect following up on corrective actions and their effectiveness. FMEA teams should review high-risk failure modes with the management and update FMEAs with subsequent tests and linkages to control plans.
SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor) as your FMEA Tool
Tracking FMEA corrective actions can be difficult for product design and process improvement teams. Streamline FMEA workflows and achieve optimum results using SafetyCulture, the world’s most powerful inspection software. With SafetyCulture as your FMEA tool, you are empowering teams to:
- Develop and follow up on corrective actions
As soon as high-risk failure modes are identified, FMEA teams can create an action within the app and its assignee will receive a notification containing the details of the corrective action, due date, and priority. When the assignee completes or changes the status of an action, FMEA teams will also receive a notification. Easily track the implementation of corrective actions and enhance effectiveness with SafetyCulture!
- Automatically generate and share FMEA reports
The moment your team completes an FMEA, a shareable report is instantly generated and can be exported as a PDF document, CSV worksheet, etc. Check out this FMEA report example.
Submit the FMEA report to the management, quality improvement teams, and suppliers with the tap of a finger!
- Perform and update FMEAs anywhere, anytime
Conduct FMEA meetings more efficiently with your mobile device. FMEA teams can access ongoing FMEAs on any iOS, Android, or Windows smartphone or tablet. View or edit completed FMEA templates for future FMEAs. All data is automatically saved and stored in the cloud!
Top 3 FMEA Templates
This FMEA template is designed to help manufacturing engineers anticipate industrial machinery failures and avoid costly machine breakdowns. Easily analyze trends in high-risk failure modes, effects, and causes with the use of this template. You can also customize this digital FMEA template based on your company requirements.
An FMEA control plan is a comprehensive documentation of corrective actions developed through an FMEA. Product design and process improvement teams should use an FMEA control plan template to prioritize high-risk failure modes and minimize or mitigate them. Use this template to specify evaluation measurement techniques, control methods, and reaction plans.