Structured problem-solving

Structured problem-solving – overview

To remain competitive we must improve the quality of the goods and services that we supply to our customers, while keeping costs low. In addition, we must become more efficient in the way we operate, by streamlining internal operations and by forward planning. Much of this can be achieved with the aid of simple tools which everyone can use.

This course introduces the ‘seven basic tools’, in a structured approach. This approach has been credited with the ability to solve 90% of quality problems.

To gain maximum benefit from the techniques, they should be applied as part of a quality improvement initiative or continuous improvement programme which has the support of management and staff alike. They profit from team working and a structured approach to problem solving.

Full details below or download course outline.

Learning objectives

By the end of the programme participants will understand:

  • The 8-step process for structured problem-solving
  • The seven basic tools and how to use them to tackle problems within the business
  • How to apply all these tools within a problem-solving ‘roadmap’
  • How to ensure that problems are solved permanently
Who should attend?

All staff involved in improvement programmes.

Course format

This two-day course features a highly interactive workshop that allows participants to practise each of the basic tools within a structured problem-solving ‘roadmap’ and using a step-by-step workshop. The workshop is multi-dimensional and the solution certainly not obvious!

Structured problem-solving – course outline


1 Introductions and course objectives

2 Problem-solving process

3 Seven basic tools for quality improvement – part 1

  • Checksheet
  • Pareto diagram

4 Review problem-solving (Steps 1 and 2)

  • Workshop 1
  • Report back on Workshop 1

5 Seven basic tools for quality improvement – part 2

  • Cause and effect diagram
  • Histograms
  • Scatter diagram
  • Review problem-solving (Steps 3 and 4)
  • Workshop 2


1 Report back on Workshop 2

2 Seven basic tools for quality improvement – part 3

  • Control Chart
  • Flowchart
  • Review problem-solving (Steps 5 and 6)
  • Workshop 3
  • Report back on Workshop 3

3 Review problem-solving (Steps 7 and 8)

  • Workshop 4

4 Team presentations – problem-solving ‘storyboard’

5 Closing discussions