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Creating charts and graphs to improve your manufacturing process

One thing that you need to keep in mind when it comes to improving your manufacturing process is that you can create charts and graphs to help you improve your entire process. One of the most common types of charts that you will run across in improving your manufacturing process is the Pareto chart, which is actually quite similar to a bar graph and is actually used similarly to a bar graph.

A Pareto chart is actually a special type of bar chart that has values that are plotted in descending order. This chart was named after Vilfredo Pareto, but it was made popular in quality assurance by Joseph Juran and Kaoru Ishikawa. This chart is only one of the seven basic tools of quality control. The other six tools are: histogram, check sheet, control chart, cause and effect diagram, flowchart, and scatter diagram.

Basically how a Pareto chart works is that on the left vertical axis is the frequency of occurrence, which is the number of time something happens or occurs. But the good thing about this side of the chart is that it can also represent cost or other units of measure, depending on what you need it to represent. The right side of the vertical axis is the cumulative percentage of the total number of occurrences, total cost or total of the particular unit of measure. On the bottom of the graph are the reasons for the things that are being measured. The basic purpose for the Pareto chart in general is to highlight the most important among a large set of factors, but in quality controlthe chart is basically used to represent the most common sources of defects, the highest occurring type of defect, or anything else that you are trying to determine. The purpose of a Pareto chart in six sigma is that it is a bar graph that is used to graphically summarize and display the relative importance of the differences between groups of data.

The good news about using a Pareto chart in six sigma is that it is actually rather easy to construct and it serves a very good purpose, not to mention the fact that the Pareto chart is full of information, which can be the answers to questions that your company has about quality control or anything else.

The first thing that you need to do when setting up a Pareto chart is that you are going to need to construct the chart by segmenting the range of data into groups. Basically what this means is that you are going to need to group all of the data that you have into different categories. Then you are going to need to set up the right (cumulative percentage) and left (frequency of occurrence) side of the vertical axis. Then you are going to need to determine the number of data points that reside within each group and put the chart together.

When it comes to reading and constructing the Pareto chart one thing that you need to keep in mind is that even though it is a type of bar graph there is still a difference between the bar graph and the Pareto chart. That difference is the fact that the Pareto chart is ordered in descending frequency magnitude and that the groups are defined by the users. And in companies who use the Pareto chart with six sigma use the chart to answer certain questions like: What are the largest issues facing our team or business? What 20% of sources are causing 80% of the problems?

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