FRACAS, or Failure Reporting, Analysis, and Corrective Action System, is a process for managing issues that occur with any type of system, product, or process. There are many other terms used to describe the same, or similar, process including CAPA (Corrective and Preventive Action), CA (Corrective Action), APQP (Advanced Product Quality Planning), and QMS (Quality Management System). These methods provide a means of improving reliability, quality, operation, and safety by systematically managing issues as they occur.
What is a FRACAS process?
A FRACAS (Failure Reporting, Analysis, and Corrective Action System) is a closed-loop process for handling any type of failure, complaint, incident, issue, problem, or concern. All organizations handle “issues” in some manner, even if it’s just one person answering a phone and responding to a customer. The advantage of a FRACAS system is that it ensures that as these incidents arise, they are captured, and subsequently tracked until they have been properly addressed. This is the Corrective Action (CA) part of the process. In some cases, organizations may also perform Prevention Action tasks, which includes taking action to make sure the problem does not reoccur.
Why implement a FRACAS system?
There are many advantages of having a FRACAS system in place. Simply tracking so that no issue gets “lost in the shuffle” is just one of them. A FRACAS system ensures your issues are tracked in one central data repository; it enables anyone in your company, group, or team to view this vital information; and it can be used as a source of information for future problem resolution. Depending on how you decide to design and configure your system, you can analyze your process, track metrics, and monitor your system for continual process improvement. A well-designed FRACAS system can help to improve quality, reduce risk, increase reliability, and enhance safety.
How do I implement a FRACAS System?
Implementing a FRACAS system starts by evaluating your current process. How do you track and handle issues that arise in your organization? Do different departments use different processes? What are the advantages of your current process? What are the disadvantages? Consider what elements you want to keep, and those that need improvement. From this analysis, make a list of requirements for your FRACAS system. Would you benefit from using an off-the-shelf tool to manage and track your issues? If not, establish your in-house rules and process for issue management. Otherwise, evaluate available options for implementing a commercially available FRACAS solution.
What should I look for in a FRACAS tool?
When evaluating FRACAS management software, there are many factors to consider. Start by selecting tools to evaluate based on those that meet your previously determined set of requirements. Additionally, one major feature to look for is the ability to easily customize all aspects of the process. There is rarely a one-size-fits-all approach to a FRACAS process, and it is quite common for FRACAS processes to grow and change over time. For this reason, customization—and especially easy customization by you—is key. Also, look at the ease-of-use of the tool: is there a steep learning curve and training required? Consider a tool that supports mobile devices so that data entry and follow up can easily be handled without the need to be tied to a computer.
Relyence FRACAS provides all the key features you need in a FRACAS process. Relyence FRACAS supports the most widely used closed loop process control standards, such as 8D, PDCA, and DMAIC, right out of the box so that you can get up and running in minimal time. You can customize these built-in templates, or create a process from the ground up to meet your unique requirements.