Browse Definitions :
Definition

Pareto chart (Pareto distribution diagram)

A Pareto chart, also called a Pareto distribution diagram, is a vertical bar graph in which values are plotted in decreasing order of relative frequency from left to right. Pareto charts are extremely useful for analyzing what problems need attention first because the taller bars on the chart, which represent frequency, clearly illustrate which variables have the greatest cumulative effect on a given system. 

The Pareto chart provides a graphic depiction of the Pareto principle, a theory maintaining that 80% of the output in a given situation or system is produced by 20% of the input. 

The Pareto chart is one of the seven basic tools of quality control. The independent variables on the chart are shown on the horizontal axis and the dependent variables are portrayed as the heights of bars. A point-to-point graph, which shows the cumulative relative frequency, may be superimposed on the bar graph. Because the values of the statistical variables are placed in order of relative frequency, the graph clearly reveals which factors have the greatest impact and where attention is likely to yield the greatest benefit.

A Simple Example

A Pareto chart can be used to quickly identify what business issues need attention. By using hard data instead of intuition, there can be no question about what problems are influencing the outcome most. In the example below, XYZ Clothing Store was seeing a steady decline in business. Before the manager did a customer survey, he assumed the decline was due to customer dissatisfaction with the clothing line he was selling and he blamed his supply chain for his problems. After charting the frequency of the answers in his customer survey, however, it was very clear that the real reasons for the decline of his business had nothing to do with his supply chain. By collecting data and displaying it in a Pareto chart, the manager could see which variables were having the most influence. In this example, parking difficulties, rude sales people and poor lighting were hurting his business most. Following the Pareto Principle, those are the areas where he should focus his attention to build his business back up. 

pareto chart

See also: flowchart, histogram

This was last updated in March 2011

Continue Reading About Pareto chart (Pareto distribution diagram)

SearchCompliance

  • information governance

    Information governance is a holistic approach to managing corporate information by implementing processes, roles, controls and ...

  • enterprise document management (EDM)

    Enterprise document management (EDM) is a strategy for overseeing an organization's paper and electronic documents so they can be...

  • risk assessment

    Risk assessment is the identification of hazards that could negatively impact an organization's ability to conduct business.

SearchSecurity

  • cyber espionage

    Cyber espionage, also called cyber spying, is a form of cyber attack that is carried out against a competitive company or ...

  • virus (computer virus)

    A computer virus is malicious code that replicates by copying itself to another program, computer boot sector or document and ...

  • honeypot (computing)

    A honeypot is a network-attached system set up as a decoy to lure cyber attackers and detect, deflect and study hacking attempts ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • risk mitigation

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • call tree

    A call tree is a layered hierarchical communication model that is used to notify specific individuals of an event and coordinate ...

  • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

    Disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) is the replication and hosting of physical or virtual servers by a third party to provide ...

SearchStorage

  • dropout

    Dropout refers to data, or noise, that's intentionally dropped from a neural network to improve processing and time to results.

  • cloud storage

    Cloud storage is a service model in which data is transmitted and stored on remote storage systems, where it is maintained, ...

  • cloud testing

    Cloud testing is the process of using the cloud computing resources of a third-party service provider to test software ...

Close