Corrective Action Report (CAR)

Corrective Action Report is a procedure used to originate a corrective action. It is used as response to a defect. In simple words, it means an action/actions adopted to eliminate the problem from occurring again. Correction relates to containment whereas corrective action relates to the root cause. The main objective of CAR is to investigate a problem that occurred, by having done the root cause analysis and finding out resolution to prevent the recurrence. To determine the root cause various tools can be adopted, one such is 5 whys analysis.

CAR is used to eliminate the cause of a defected non-conformity. There can be more then one non-conformity. Corrective Action is taken to prevent recurrence of said nonconformance. Here, non-conformity is when a product or service does not conform to a certain specification of the prescribed standards.

CAR is one that guides a supervisor when documenting an issue and contains the following;

  • Quantity of product required
  • Description of standards alongside any deviations
  • Cross referenced forms
  • Results of evaluation
  • Corrective action to take

Objectives of CAR

  • Main purpose of constructing a CAR is to avoid repeating mistakes.
  • A CAR should be written every time an organization comes across an issue or problem
  • Simple procedure should be adopted for writing reports and reviewing outcomes to ensure standards are being met and mistakes are not repeated.
  • Failure to write a CAR may subsequently lead to a repeated mistakes and it further is a threat to the business. One must be motivated at all times to write and follow up on the CAR.
  • Repeated mistakes can be dreadful. It results in dissatisfied customers, loss of customers, unhappy employees and a poor work environment.
  • The CARs help to reduce mistakes, or at least fewer repeated mistakes.
  • Corrective action once taken should be verified for effectiveness after a certain period of time.
  • CAR helps increase moral of employees and managers who regularly monitor the operations.
  • The CARs can also serve as record of disciplinary procedures for future reference
  • There is no universal standard for writing a CAR. Every manager can adopt his or her style to develop CAR and which would go in hand with the organizational needs.

Steps to prepare CAR

  1. Define corrective action for the problem occurred
  2. Identify the root cause
  3. Identify when to issue CARs
  4. Define levels of corrective action
  5. Identify contractual requirements impacting the schedule and delivery of the products
  6. Continuous follow ups
  7. Recording of the end result for future reference

To summarize, corrective action is critical aspect of resolving adverse events within the organization. The corrective action report’s efforts will be ineffective without a proper root cause analysis. The corrective action puts the organization through a workflow to guide the process and keep the right people in the loop. It provides a long-term value for the organization.