Tree Diagram

What is a Tree Diagram?

→ A tree diagram represents the hierarchy of tasks and subtasks needed to complete.

→ The tree diagram starts with one item and then divided into different branches. Then each branch is again divided into two or more, and so on.

→ The finished diagram looks like a tree, with a trunk and multiple branches. So that it is known as a tree_diagram.

→ It is used to break down broad categories into detailed levels of category.

→ With the help of this tool, we can analyze or plan anything from a very general thing to a detailed specific thing.

→ It is used to distinguish any broad goal into increasing levels of detailed actions that could be done to achieve the main goal. This tool represents all things graphically.

→ Tree_Diagram is part of a Seven Management and Planning Tool (New 7 QC Tools).


Different Names of a Tree Diagram

  • Tree analysis
  • Analytical tree
  • Hierarchy_Diagram


When to use the Tree Diagram

→ When we need to get specific details regarding any issue, planning, or objective from very general terms.

→ We can use this tool to develop an action plan for any problem and analyzing the various processes in detail.

→ This tool also used as a Root Cause Analysis Tool for a problem.

→ After finding the key issues with the help of an Affinity_Diagram or Interrelationship_Diagram, we can use the Tree_Diagram for the potential solution.

→ Sometimes this tool is used for the validation purpose for the proposed solutions against the problems.

→ It is a very good communication and presentation tool while we are presenting some analysis to others.

→ To develop all process steps for a new product manufacturing and showing the relationships between the manufacturing operation process.


How to make a Tree Diagram?

→ Refer below Five Steps for understanding the procedure for making the Tree_Diagram.

  1. Identify or Define the Problem
  2. Formation of Team
  3. Generate the major headings of Diagram
  4. Divide each major heading into specific detail
  5. Review the complete Diagram
How to make a Tree Diagram

Step_01: Identify or Define the Problem

→ Identify a high priority problem that needs to be solved on priority.

→ In other words, we can say that to define a goal statement, project planning, problem statement, or whatever we need to study/solve.


Step_02: Formation of Team

→ After the first step, now we need to form a competent team for brainstorming and Problem-Solving.


Step_03: Generate the major headings of the Diagram

→ After Team Formation, we need to decide the direction of the_diagram whether we need to go from top to bottom or from left to right side during the analysis.

→ Then perform a brainstorming activity to identify the primary ideas or causes to achieve the objective. Arrange them in an appropriate order and put all ideas into a rectangle box.


Step_04: Divide each major heading into specific detail

→ For each of the primary ideas/causes identify secondary ideas/causes. Arrange them in next level rectangular boxes.

→ Now after secondary ideas/causes try to identify tertiary ideas/causes that are necessary to find out the final one. Also, put them into the next level rectangular box.

→ Continue the process until the team can identify the final solution/ideas/causes/countermeasure.


Step_05: Review the complete_Diagram

→ Now in the final stage, we need to review the completed Tree_Diagram for project flow and completing the same.

→ So this tool helps us to develop the solution.

→ The typical layout of the complete diagram is mentioned in the below picture.

Tree Diagram Basic Structure

Example and Case Study of Tree Diagram:

→ Refer to the below example for a better understanding of the Tree_Diagram.


Step_01: Identify or Define the Problem

→ In this step, we need to define a goal statement, project planning, Problem Statement, or whatever we need to study.

→ In our example, we need to find out the Root Cause Analysis.

→ Our problem statement is: "Root Cause Analysis of  Pump Failure"


Step_02: Formation of Team

→ The team should have sufficient knowledge of the goal statement and process for the root cause analysis.

→ Generally, the team should include cross-function's team members.

→ The ideal group size is four to six members. But if the project requires more members then we can add as per the requirement.


Step_03: Generate the major headings of Diagram

→ In this step, we need to identify the first level of detail that is related to the problem statement.

→ The simple, easy, and effective method for generating ideas is brainstorming.

→ These are the major “ideas/causes” by which we can achieve the goal statement.

→ To encourage creativity, it is often helpful to do an “Action Affinity” on the goal statement.

→ Now we have the major heading "Root Cause Analysis for Pump Failure".


Step_04: Divide each major heading into specific detail

→ In step 4, we need to break or distinguish the major heading into the smaller tasks, activity, or causes.

→ Now The major heading needs to separate into smaller parts.

→ So the Pump failed due to bearing failure - primary cause(s).

→ After that, the secondary cause(s) are erosion, corrosion, fatigue, and overload.

→ The tertiary cause(s) are high vibration under secondary cause fatigue.

→ Then we have mentioned the causes of high vibration.

→ Finally the in the last column we have mentioned the root cause.

→ We can see all these details in the below picture.

Example of Tree Diagram


Step_05: Review the complete Diagram

→ Now in the final stage, we need to review the completed Tree_Diagram for project flow and completing the same.

→ The Tree_Diagram is a very good visual communication tool.

→ The team’s final important task is to consider suggested changes, additions, or elimination and to modify the Tree if it is appropriate.

Example of Tree Diagram Step Wise

Benefits of Tree Diagram

→ It is a very good visual tool for analysis or problem-solving.
→ This tool helps us for systematic analysis of any problem.
→ It is very easy to use by any person.
→ This tool is also very easy to understand and very easy to represent.

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