A Pareto Diagram or Chart is a bar chart that re-orders the categories so they are rank-ordered from the largest total occurrences to the smallest.

In process analysis, this helps identify the most frequently occurring problems or defect – or separate the vital few from the useful many.

The correct ranking for the Pareto chart categories from left to right would be from highest to lowest.

When You Should Use a Pareto Chart (Pareto Diagram)

  • See Pareto Analysis for a fuller discussion.
  • When analyzing the frequency of root cause data and you want to focus on the most significant contributors (the vital few).
  • When you want to understand broad cause by looking at the component pieces.
  • Very effective way to share a lot of information quickly.

How to Make a Pareto Chart (Pareto Diagram)

See the article here on how to make a Pareto Chart.

Pareto Chart (Pareto Diagram) Example

Pareto charts can be easily created by tallying a check sheet, making a bar chart out of it, and re-ordering it.

Pareto Chart


Also see Problem Identification. Pareto in daily lives, Solomon’s Pareto

Pareto Chart (Pareto Diagram) Videos

Six Sigma Green Belt Pareto Chart (Pareto Diagram) Questions


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Questions, comments, issues, concerns? Please leave a note in the comments below!


Question: When in the process of trying to identify the Critical X’s for a LSS project a Belt creates a(n) _____________ because frequently it is 20% of the inputs that have an 80% impact on the output.

(A) Pareto Chart
(B) FMEA
(C) Np Chart
(D) X-Y Diagram

Answer: (A) Pareto Charts are used to identify and quantify the source of a problem. Also see FMEA, X-Y Diagram, NP Chart.

Question: Which of the following tools can be used to identify and quantify the source of a problem?

(A) Affinity diagram
(B) Control chart
(C) Pareto chart
(D) Quality function deployment

Answer: (C) Pareto Charts are used to identify and quantify the source of a problem. Affinity diagrams help reduce processes to a few key steps. Control charts can show you your process has gotten out of control but won’t identify the source or quantify it. QFD is a planning process for adapting client’s needs to your plans.

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Comments (7)

A pareto chart tells us those occurances that make up 80% of the cumulative total which are the “significant many” to focus on identifying root cause.

A well constructed histogram should tell you categories that make up the total of all occurances and the rank order of those categories.

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