The Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle

This figure illustrates the Plan, Do, Check, Act cycle, abbreviated “PDCA,” which is the iterative process of continuous small improvement. The figure consists of circles, arrows and text. The flow originates with a blue arrow labeled, “Grasp the situation.”  To the right, text says, “1. Identify the problem. 2. Observe. 3. Analyze for root causes.” The arrow points to the first of four circles, this one being red. It’s labeled, “Plan,” and the descriptor text says, “Hypothesis.” From it is an arrow pointing to a green circle labeled, “Do.” Its descriptor text says, “Try,” and outside the circle, text states, “Countermeasures introduced as experiments.” An arrow points from the “Do” circle to a purple circle labeled, “Check.” Its descriptor text says, “Reflect.” From this circle, an arrow points to a blue circle labeled, “Act.” Its descriptor text says, “Adjust.” An arrow points from the “Act” circle back to the “Plan” circle, showing how the cycle repeats itself. This figure is copyright 2015 by the American Heart Association.