The 5 why technique is used to identify and manage risks. The BABOK focuses on risks involving negative events (threats) while positive risks (opportunities) are captured as needs and managed accordingly.

Risk analysis is based on detailed data like project plans, marketing forecasts, security protocols, or financial data.

Why use the five whys technique?

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  • The five whys allow you to improve the quality of your products and services.

  • Stakeholders can express their views at will. It enables them to propose appropriate solutions in order to correct the causes of a problem.

  • This technique helps you to keep your objective in sight while looking for the root of a problem.

It is best suited for simple or moderately complex problems/questions.

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  • Its versatility and simplicity allow for convenient combining with other techniques.
  • Its operating speed enables you to use it as a matter of priority without wasting too much time.

This technique is very useful for dealing with single cause problems. When facing major or multi-cause problems, rather consider other techniques (such as the fishbone diagram). This prevents you from coming to a dead end by following the wrong trail. Once all ideas have been captured in the diagram, the five whys approach allows you to explore the fundamental causes in detail

How to use the five whys technique

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On top of the brief description of the method, access to:

  • an explanation of when and how to use it,
  • a practical example,
  • tips and recommendations for use,
  • downloadable checklists and templates,
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