Understanding the Real Meaning Of a Root Cause

By Mat-thys Fourie on Mar 17, 2017 3:26:19 PM


Most IT Professionals do not make the distinction between the Technical Cause of a problem and its Root Cause. These terms are often used inter-changeably or worse case, there is no distinction made between them at all. The IT Professional who “gets this” distinction has a major advantage over his/her colleagues in determining a Root Cause quicker, cheaper and permanently. The trend of recognizing this distinction will grow in the years to come.


Continue Reading

Emerging Trends in ROOT CAUSE ANALYSIS (RCA) for 2017

By Mat-thys Fourie on Feb 22, 2017 8:03:12 PM

I am a professional problem solver. When I started applying my skills set as an Industrial Engineer to the IT environment, I was astonished at the maturity level of troubleshooting skills, specifically Root Cause Analysis, in this sector.  I became aware of a  whole generation of IT Professionals who have never been taught the fundamentals of deductive reasoning or critical thinking skills. There was (mis)use of the “5 Whys” technique and attempts to clone branded solutions to in-house situations, but little else in RCA. That has changed gradually over the last 10 years, but there are still some very basic problems and obstacles in getting RCA properly embedded into the Service Management environment.

Continue Reading

Asking, “What It Is Not?” Will Create Significant Insights

By Mat-thys Fourie on May 3, 2016 5:52:00 PM

Into the Incident Experienced

In an incident situation,we are always looking for that “Silver Bullet” question – the one question that would bring some insight to the incident being experienced. The good news is that there is such a question; in fact there are a few of these questions that could provide you with that insight needed. We call that the “but not” question.

Continue Reading

Are you Identifying the Correct Fault in Problem Solving Sessions?

By Mat-thys Fourie on Apr 19, 2016 6:30:00 PM

Over the years as a consultant, I’ve learned how to listen to what people are saying, albeit doing it for a different reason you might have had in mind. I am doing it to eliminate the “noise” and “clutter” normally surrounding problem solving sessions. This might surprise you, but the biggest obstacle in solving problems and incidents effectively, is the human nature to “elevate” or escalate things in order to get the appropriate attention of the other person.

Continue Reading

"Technical Cause" and "Root Cause" - Aren't These the Same?

By Mat-thys Fourie on Jun 11, 2015 6:29:00 PM

Why it is so difficult to find an accurate and verified root cause… and what to do about it.

(Updated version of blog originally seen here.)


Firstly, there is a great deal of confusion about a Root Cause as opposed to a Technical Cause. Secondly, you cannot really determine a verifiable Root Cause before first identifying a Technical Cause.

Continue Reading

Sign up for our newsletter and receive updates that will help your business to grow. Do not waste time, we're here for you.