Process Capability Analysis Explained

By Nandini

Last updated on Feb 10 2022

Process Capability Analysis Explained

Process Capability Analysis Guide - Cp, Cpk, Pp, Ppk


Here we will talk about Process Capability Analysis. If this is the first that you have heard of this term, you are at the right place. Process Capability Analysis is the set of calculations mainly used to assess whether the system is statistically able to meet the group of specifications or requirements in these needs. A set of data is essential to proceed with the process of capability analysis. To complete these calculations, it is necessary to have a bunch of data usually generated by a control chart. However, we can easily collect data for this reason specifically.


Suppose we talk about the specifications, the numerical values the entire system is expected to operate, including minimum and maximum acceptable values. Generally, there is only one limit, either minimum or maximum. If we talk about the specifications, it is mainly set by the customer, engineer, or even managers, as we know that the specifications are numerical requirements, goals, and standards. It is important to remember that specifications are not the same control limits. Mainly, the control limits come from the charts of control based on the data specifications that are considered the system's numerical requirements.



Important Things to Know about Capability Analysis


Before going further, it is essential to know that all processes of capability analysis need that data to be statistically stable without any particular causes of the variation to assess if the information is regular or not. Therefore, it is necessary to complete a control chart. Whenever there are any special causes, then the data from the system will be changed. Thus, the capability analysis will show approximately more about the past whenever we perform capability analysis. It is essential to know that we cannot use it to predict the capability in the future. Most of the time, we find it to provide a snapshot of the process at best. When the system is stable, the capability analysis shows the system's ability and predicts the system's future performance. It would help if you considered capability analysis to enhance the system's performance level to get positive results. It will help bring significant changes to the overall performance and will lead to better returns as well.


We know that capability analysis is vital for the system and its better performance. In that case, it is crucial to learn more about capability analysis. More information will help to gain more rapid growth. Mainly capability analysis is summarized in indices, and these indices show the ability of the system to meet the numerical requirements. The main objective of capability analysis is to meet the numerical needs of the system to increase the overall performance and growth. Capability analysis is the process that can be easily monitored and reported over time to represent the process of changing plans. Various capability indices are presented in this specific section, including Cp and Cpk.


It is no hidden fact that Cp and Cpk are still unknown terms for many people. It is essential to know that the indices are elementary to interpret. A Cpk of more than one indicates that the system is producing within the specifications. When the Cpk is less than one, then it means that the system is paying data outside the specifications. If you are willing to know every detailed information related to capability analysis and indices, then make sure to move ahead in this article. Here we have given a detailed explanation of several indices and their interpretation.


It is no hidden fact that capability analysis is an effective and excellent tool that helps represent the extent of the improvement made to a process. The main objective of the capability analysis is to summarize a great deal of information that ensures it showcases the process of capability and the extent of improvement as well. However, capability indices help in the change that mainly focuses on meeting the requirements to ensure the continuity of the process. The primary focus of the capability indices is to reduce the proportion of the product or service that doesn't meet the specifications with the help of measures like the percentage of non-conforming products. The best thing about capability is that it helps reduce the variations related to the specifications and helps to get higher Cp and Cpk values increasingly.


It is highly recommended to complete the control chart and histogram before completing the capability analysis. You can easily create these kinds of charts, and you can also perform capability analysis with the help of software like SQCpack.


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What are process capability indices?


As we understand, Process Capability Analysis is the best tool mainly used to figure out how well a given process meets the set of specifications limits. It uses the measures of how well your system performs. It is essential to know that we use the process capability indices primarily to define the capability of the process. There are different process capability indices, and if you calculate one or all depends on the requirements of your analysis. If you want to calculate any process capability indices, you need to assume the stability of the process. If the process is unstable, then process capability indices are also meaningless. Therefore, the first step is determining the stability.


What is Cp?


If we talk about the Cp, then it stands for process capability. Process capability is a simple measure of the process of capability analysis, and this allows us to know how much potential the system has to meet upper specifications and lower specifications limits. The weak point of process capability is that while focusing on data spread, it ignores the average. However, when the system is being tested and is not centered between the limits of specifications, it may provide a misleading impression.


You can test how centered the system is by comparing Cp and Cpk. When the process is on its target, these two will be equal. However, when there is a significant difference between these two process capability indices, it indicates a more off-center process.


What is Cpk?


Now let's talk about the Cpk. Cpk stands for the process capability index. The process capability index primarily refers to the capability of the specific process that has achieved output within certain specifications. It also defines the ability of a manufacturer to provide a better productivity level in manufacturing. The best thing about Cpk is that it helps determine the manufacturers' power to produce a product that meets the expectation level of consumers. We all know that it is essential to satisfy customers to increase the growth level of an organization. It doesn't matter what your organization is about, but providing quality goods and services to the consumer should always be your priority. When you can meet the expectation level of the consumer, then it will offer better outcome results. For that, you need to consider Cpk to determine the process level. It will help to meet all the expectations within a tolerance zone only. When the Cpk is more than 1, then the system is said to have the potential to perform as well as required.


There is a specific equation for the calculation of Cpk. The equation for the process capability index includes


[Minimum (mean– LSL, USL – mean)] / (0.5*NT). NT stands for natural tolerance here, and LSL is for the lower specification limits. On the other side, USL stands for upper specifications limits. You can put all the limits on the given formula, and then you can get your Cpk results.


What is Pp?


It is vital to learn more about Pp. Pp stands for process performance, and it is very similar to the Cp. However, Pp measures the actual performance instead of potential measurements like Co. Nevertheless, it is comparable to Co, and mainly measures spread and are subjected to the same weaknesses.


What is PPK?


PPK stands for process performance index, and it helps measure the actual performance of the system instead of potential. You will be able to get actual performance results with the help of PPC. When the process performance index is between 0 and 1, it indicates that not all the process outputs are always meant to meet the specifications. When the process performance index is found around 1,99.73 percent of your system output, it is within the specifications. If the percentage comes around 99.73, the system output is the standard distribution curve.


The smaller process performance index values indicate that the deviation from the specifications is more significant if the larger process performance index values show the minor deviation from the specifications.


How to do measurements and calculations of the process capability?


Many people don't have any ideas regarding the Analysis of process capability or how to measure it. In that case, you need to stick to this article to access all essential information. Here you will be able to access the process of calculating it. However, there are several steps that you can consider to measure and calculate the process capability. Therefore, it is important to learn various steps to follow when performing a capability analysis.


  • If we talk about the first step, then it is to determine the limits of the upper and lower specification for the entire process of the system. So, for this step, the customer, client, and personnel produce the product that can define these specific limits.
  • Now let's move to the second step, which includes collecting a sampling of the current position process to determine the mean, standard deviation of the output of existing products. To proceed with this step, obtaining a large sample size and collecting samples over a long period in one production run is vital to ensure robust and accurate sampling. Again, you can rely on the Minitab process capability report to proceed with the calculations process.


If we talk about the calculations of potential capability, then it is mainly calculated by dividing the width of the specification by the process. Then, we calculate possible power using the six standard deviations; you need to multiply around six times the standard deviation from the sample to get the process width. After that, you need to subtract the LSL from the USL to get the width of the specifications. It will look something like this:




After that, it is vital to take Cok value. For this, you need to calculate the actual capability during the production. It is essential to know that we can calculate the Cpk value by measuring how centered the process is between the specifications. We figure it by the process capability of the lower specifications, which Cpl denotes, and the upper specifications, which Cpu marks. We calculate it by following this formula.


Cpl=(Process Mean-LSL)(3s)


Cpu=(USL-Process Mean)(3s)


When you complete the above calculations, then you need to consider the smallest value of the Cpl or Cpu, and then it should be calculated as follows:


Cpk=Min(Cpl, Cpu)


If the minimum value comes lower than 1, then we cannot accept the process for further use, and it will also not meet the requirements of the specification. Numbers closer to 1 like two and three are more desirable. Remember that Cpk higher than 1.33 is considered the standard for most companies required as sufficient process capability. It would help if you worked towards a more robust reduction in the variability process or even towards the centering of the midpoint of the process output.


What is the Process Capability Analysis using Minitab included to Conduct Process Capability Analysis in Minitab?


Minitab is a popular tool widely used by professionals to perform various statistical calculations like the normality test, process capability analysis, and many more. For example, process capability Minitab analysis for calculations yields better results.


Though the steps are straightforward, which will allow you to conduct the process of capability analysis in Minitab, before going further, it is essential to know that process capability report Minitab also provides excellent insight into the manufacturing processes with all details and descriptions. The process capability report supplied by the capability analysis will help you enhance the overall performance level to increase the growth rate and meet the specifications required by the customer. Therefore, make sure to consider process capability analysis in r for better results and reports.


Process capability analysis in Minitab is very effective, and it is widely accepted to determine the results. However, you need to consider the following steps to access these calculations.


  • At first, you will have to go—the file menu. From there, you need to click on the Open Project option and then make sure to load the required data. It is vital to give all the data as per the requirements.
  • After that, you need to head to the menu options and move to the quality tools. Then move to the capability analysis. It will help you access quality tools that provide better calculations and results.
  • You will have to select Normal Or Nonnormal analysis from the drop-down menu on a distribution basis if it is normal or nonnormal. Therefore, it would be best if you choose accordingly.
  • Now make sure to click on nonnormal or even regular options.
  • Now enter all the essential data as per the requirements to proceed with the further steps. When you complete the details given, you can conduct the capability analysis.
  • Click Ok.
  • When you are done with all the above Steps to Conduct Process Capability Analysis in Minitab, you can explore many courses with statistics. In addition, you can also access 100 percent Minitab online courses.




Process capability analysis is the primary concept that plays an essential role in the determination of the overall performance level of the system. More likely, it is a must study for the professional looking forward to having a firm knowledge of capability analysis Minitab with statistics. Taking the help of a reputed accreditation organization like Sprintzeal will help a great deal in gaining thorough knowledge about this process.

Process capability analysis is the ability to produce a product or service that can meet the specifications defined by the customer's requirements. It helps to reveal how well the manufacturing process in your organization is going on. You can also access proper manufacturing insight to determine the productivity level. It will help enhance the operation and allow us to sustain the improvement.

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About the Author

Sprintzeal   Nandini

With over 3 years of experience in creating informative, authentic, and engaging content, Nandini is a technology content writer who is skilled in writing well-researched articles, blog posts, newsletters, and other forms of content. Her works are focused on the latest updates in E-learning, professional training and certification, and other important fields in the education domain.

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