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Lean Tool


Plan-Do-Check-Act (aka PDCA or Plan-Do-Study-Act) cycle is a four-step method used for continuous improvement processes, solving problems and managing change. The model is useful for testing improvement measures on a small scale before updating procedures and working practices.

PDCA (PDSA) stands for:

  • Plan: Recognize an opportunity, understand the problem and plan a change
  • Do: Apply and test the change. Carry out a small scale pilot.
  • Check (Study): Review the test, analyze/study the results and identify what you learned
  • Act: Take action based on what you learned (Adopt/Adapt/Abandon)

Use When

  • Needing a model for continuous improvement
  • Starting a new improvement project
  • Developing a new or improved design of a process, product or service
  • Something bugs you
  • Customers are complaining
  • You find yourself saying, "There has got to be a better way!" Implementing any change


How to Use