Help Manual


Sigma Magic Help Version 15

Relationship Diagram


A Relationship Diagram is used to pictorially represent the relationship between causes and effects of a complex situation to identify the cause which has the biggest impact for improvement.

This tool can be added to your active workbook by clicking on Project and then selecting Mapping Tools > Relationship Diagram. The software should automatically open the task menu for this tool. If the task menu is not opened, click on the Analysis Setup button to open this menu bar. A sample task menu bar is shown below: task menu2


Click on the Settings button on the task menu bar to open the menu options for this tool.


A sample screenshot of the setup menu is shown below.
Num Columns: Specify the number of columns you want to display on the process map. You can select between 5 and 100 columns. Note that the columns not displayed are hidden and are not deleted from the worksheet. You can go back and change this setting at any time to unhide the hidden columns if you need more working space to create the map.
Col Width: Specify the width of the cells on the worksheet. This will resize the columns in your work area. You can increase the width to create larger size symbols or smaller cells to reduce the size of the symbols on your worksheet. Note that worksheet symbols will change size only when added to the worksheet for the first time and when you select the checkbox for Scale.
Map Symbols: Specify the symbols you want to use to create the relationship diagram. There are two options available
Cause & EffectThis is the default option where you map all the events and then identify the causes and effects.
Chen NotationTHis is used to map the relationship diagram using events, attributes, and relationships.
View Example: Click on this button to open the example file. You can view the example to get an idea of how to fill out this tool or you can use the example as a starting point and modify it to meet your project needs.
Help Button: Click on this button to open the help file on this topic.
Cancel Button: Click on this button to exit without saving any changes.
OK Button: Click on this button to save changes and update your analysis results.
An example of the task menu bar with basic symbols is shown below. task menu


You can click on any of the symbols on the task menu bar to add that symbol to the worksheet. After you click on the symbol move your cursor to where you want to symbol to be placed and then click on the left mouse key to place the symbol on the worksheet. Pick the appropriate type of cause or effect to add to the worksheet. Once you add the symbol to the worksheet, you can click on the symbol to edit the description of the symbol. Use a short description for each cause and effect. Finally, use the arrows to connect each cause and effect with the arrow pointing away from the cause towards the effect. If the cause-effect relationship is very weak, you may want to avoid showing that relationship on the worksheet so that the focus will remain only on the most important relationships.

There is no specific data that needs to be entered on the worksheet. All you need to do is to add the symbol from the task menu bar to the worksheet and then define the relationship between the icons.


If you click on the Verify button, the software will perform some checks on the data you have entered. A sample screenshot of the dialog box is shown in the figure below. Verify The objective of this analysis as well as any checks that are performed is listed in this dialog box. For example, the software may check if you have correctly specified the input options and entered the required data on the worksheet. The results of the analysis checks are listed on the right. If the checks are passed, then they are shown as a green-colored checkmark. If the verification checks fail, then they are shown as a red-colored cross. If the verification checks result in a warning, they are shown in the orange color exclamation mark and finally, any checks that are required to be performed by the user are shown as blue info icons.


Click on Compute Outputs to update the output calculations. An example screenshot of the worksheet is shown below. outputs If you have performed the Cause & Effect analysis, then the output will list all the causes and effects based on the diagram you have drawn. Clicking on the Outputs button also performs a validation check to ensure that all entities are connected properly. The main causes are those entities that have only arrows coming out of the entity and no arrows going into the entity. The main effects are those entities that have only arrows going into the entity and no arrows coming out of the entity. If you have drawn the diagram per the Chen notation, then the system will list the number of entities, attributes, and relationships you have used on the diagram.

If you have created the relationship diagram using the Chen notation, the diagram consists of entities, attributes, and relationships. An example screenshot of the worksheet is shown below. outputs2


Here are a few pointers regarding this analysis:
  • Even though you can add other entities manually to your worksheet using standard Excel functionality (i.e. not using the task menu bar), these will not be counted properly by the software unless you use the pre-defined entities since they have a specific naming convention for the shapes. Do not copy and paste the entities and attributes to create new ones. Only use the task menu bar to add new items.


Following examples can be found in the Examples folder.
  • Select a problem you are working on and create a relationship diagram for the same. Identify the most important causes that you should focus on? (Relationship Diagram 1.xlsm)