Unit of competency details

MSS404052A - Apply statistics to operational processes (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Supersedes and is equivalent to MSACMT452A - Apply statistics to processes in manufacturing 01/May/2012
Is superseded by and equivalent to MSS404052 - Apply statistics to operational processesSupersedes and is equivalent to MSS404052A Apply statistics to operational processes 21/Jun/2016

Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 02/May/2012

Training packages that include this unit

CodeSort Table listing Training packages that include this unit by the Code columnTitleSort Table listing Training packages that include this unit by the Title columnRelease
PMA - Chemical, Hydrocarbons and RefiningChemical, Hydrocarbons and Refining 1.0 
PMB07 - Plastics, Rubber and Cablemaking Training PackagePlastics, Rubber and Cablemaking Training Package 2.0 
AUM - Automotive ManufacturingAutomotive Manufacturing 2.0 
FPI11 - Forest and Forest Products Training PackageForest and Forest Products Training Package 1.1-2.3 
MSM - Manufacturing Training PackageManufacturing Training Package 2.0 
MSA07 - Manufacturing Training PackageManufacturing Training Package 8.0-8.4 
MSF - Furnishing Training PackageFurnishing Training Package 1.0-2.0 
PMA08 - Chemical, Hydrocarbons and Refining Training PackageChemical, Hydrocarbons and Refining Training Package 4.0-5.0 
MEM05 - Metal and Engineering Training PackageMetal and Engineering Training Package 9.0-11.1 
MSS11 - Sustainability Training PackageSustainability Training Package 2.0-3.0 
PPM - Pulp & Paper Manufacturing Industry Training PackagePulp & Paper Manufacturing Industry Training Package 1.0 
PMC10 - Manufactured Mineral ProductsManufactured Mineral Products 1.1 
FPP10 - Pulp & Paper Manufacturing Industry Training PackagePulp & Paper Manufacturing Industry Training Package 1.2-1.3 
FWP - Forest and Wood Products Training PackageForest and Wood Products Training Package 2.0-3.0 
AUM12 - Automotive ManufacturingAutomotive Manufacturing 1.0 
DEF - Defence Training PackageDefence Training Package 1.0-2.3 
DEF12 - Defence Training PackageDefence Training Package 2.0 
SFI11 - Seafood Industry Training PackageSeafood Industry Training Package 1.1-2.2 
LMT07 - Textiles, Clothing and Footwear Training PackageTextiles, Clothing and Footwear Training Package 4.1 
FDF10 - Food ProcessingFood Processing 4.0-4.1 

Qualifications that include this unit

CodeSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Code columnTitleSort Table listing Qualifications that include this unit by the Title columnRelease
LMT30507 - Certificate III in Clothing ProductionCertificate III in Clothing Production
FDF40210 - Certificate IV in Pharmaceutical ManufacturingCertificate IV in Pharmaceutical Manufacturing
LMT31210 - Certificate III in Dry Cleaning OperationsCertificate III in Dry Cleaning Operations
PMC60110 - Advanced Diploma of Manufactured Mineral ProductsAdvanced Diploma of Manufactured Mineral Products
PPM40116 - Certificate IV in Pulping OperationsCertificate IV in Pulping Operations
FDF30111 - Certificate III in Food ProcessingCertificate III in Food Processing3-4 
AUM40113 - Certificate IV in Automotive ManufacturingCertificate IV in Automotive Manufacturing1-2 
LMT60507 - Advanced Diploma of Fashion and Textiles MerchandisingAdvanced Diploma of Fashion and Textiles Merchandising
SFI50511 - Diploma of Seafood ProcessingDiploma of Seafood Processing2-4 
MSM50316 - Diploma of Production ManagementDiploma of Production Management
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SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 010103 Statistics  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 010103 Statistics  07/Aug/2012 
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Modification History

New unit, superseding MSACMT452A Apply statistics to processes in manufacturing - Equivalent

Unit Descriptor

This unit of competency covers the skills and knowledge required to apply statistical theory and principles to the analysis and control of processes and operations.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to a person working in an organisation applying statistical process control on processes or operations. The statistical process control will usually be used to monitor the processes or operations and determine when action needs to be taken. The appropriate action will then be taken in accordance with standard procedures.

The unit includes applying knowledge of frequency distribution and variation to the data/chart to distinguish between random and non-random variation and assumes understanding of the process and/or equipment to help interpret those results.

This unit primarily requires the application of skills associated with gathering and analysing data and communicating statistical information to others. This unit also has a strong emphasis on problem solving, initiative and enterprise, planning and organising, and self-management to solve problems and manage processes.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

Not applicable.


Not applicable.

Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria


Collect process data


Interpret sampling scheme


Obtain measurements in accordance with standard procedures


Handle data, as required


Interpret data


Plot data on appropriate control chart


Distinguish between random and non-random patterns of results


Identify results outside the control limits


Recognise situations requiring action


Take appropriate action in accordance with standard procedures


Determine cost of non-conformance


Calculate control limits


Consult relevant stakeholders to determine appropriate limits


Use relevant methods to calculate/revise control limits


Plot limits on control chart


Explain impact of limit to relevant stakeholders

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

Required skills include:

  • applying a range of sampling procedures
  • analysing samples and data for variation, relevance, reliability and representativeness
  • problem solving the causes of variation in a process
  • communicating with other employees to obtain samples/data and to explain results and limits
  • plotting or documenting results
  • undertaking calculations, including:
  • basic arithmetic functions
  • mean, range, mean of means, standard deviation (using appropriate calculation aids)
  • using statistics to support process and operations control

Required knowledge 

Required knowledge includes:

  • sampling techniques
  • purpose of sampling and measurement
  • random, systematic and stratified sampling
  • purpose of replication of data for statistical control
  • samples, populations, finite and infinite populations and the differences
  • methods of calculating means, standard deviations and the like and their purpose in statistical control
  • the meaning of broad/narrow frequency distributions/range/standard deviations and skewed distributions in process terms
  • concept of limits, including:
  • 1 sigma warning limits
  • 2 sigma warning limits
  • 3 sigma control limits
  • 6 sigma limits
  • types of control charts and their applications to different types of process/product and for different purposes
  • process causes of variation and typical cause types of non-random variation
  • non-process (e.g. measurement) causes of variation
  • recognition of stable and unstable processes
  • causes of stability/instability in the process
  • calculation of control limits/process capability and the applications of different control limits
  • the standard distribution curve and confidence limits

Evidence Guide

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

A person who demonstrates competency in this unit must be able to provide evidence of the ability to:

  • follow sampling procedures
  • apply basic statistical processes
  • analyse data to identify variations and non-conformances
  • plot or document results.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment of performance must be undertaken in a workplace using or implementing one or more competitive systems and practices.

Access may be required to:

  • workplace procedures and plans relevant to work area
  • specifications and documentation relating to planned, currently being implemented, or implemented changes to work processes and procedures relevant to the assessee
  • documentation and information in relation to production, waste, overheads and hazard control/management
  • reports from supervisors/managers
  • case studies and scenarios to assess responses to contingencies.

Method of assessment 

A holistic approach should be taken to the assessment.

Competence in this unit may be assessed by using a combination of the following to generate evidence:

  • demonstration in the workplace
  • workplace projects
  • suitable simulation
  • case studies/scenarios (particularly for assessment of contingencies, improvement scenarios, and so on)
  • targeted questioning
  • reports from supervisors, peers and colleagues (third-party reports)
  • portfolio of evidence.

In all cases it is expected that practical assessment will be combined with targeted questioning to assess underpinning knowledge.

Where applicable, reasonable adjustment must be made to work environments and training situations to accommodate ethnicity, age, gender, demographics and disability.

Guidance information for assessment 

Assessment processes and techniques must be culturally appropriate and appropriate to the oracy, language and literacy capacity of the candidate and the work being performed.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Competitive systems and practices 

Competitive systems and practices may include, but are not limited to:

  • lean operations
  • agile operations
  • preventative and predictive maintenance approaches
  • monitoring and data gathering systems, such as Systems Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) software, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, Materials Resource Planning (MRP) and proprietary systems
  • statistical process control systems, including six sigma and three sigma
  • Just in Time (JIT), kanban and other pull-related operations control systems
  • supply, value, and demand chain monitoring and analysis
  • 5S
  • continuous improvement (kaizen)
  • breakthrough improvement (kaizen blitz)
  • cause/effect diagrams
  • overall equipment effectiveness (OEE)
  • takt time
  • process mapping
  • problem solving
  • run charts
  • standard procedures
  • current reality tree

Competitive systems and practices should be interpreted so as to take into account:

  • the stage of implementation of competitive systems and practices
  • the size of the enterprise
  • the work organisation, culture, regulatory environment and the industry sector

Sampling scheme 

Sampling scheme may include:

  • sampling for attributes or sampling for variables
  • batch, continuous or custom made products
  • number of items/samples
  • size of sample
  • timing of sampling
  • location of sampling points
  • type of sample
  • number/type of measurements to be done on each sample
  • sampling equipment
  • measurement/testing equipment/methods


Procedures may include:

  • work instructions
  • standard operating procedures
  • formulas/ recipes
  • batch sheets
  • temporary instructions and similar instructions provided for the smooth running of the plant
  • good operating practice as may be defined by industry codes of practice (e.g. good manufacturing practice (GMP) and responsible care)
  • government regulations

Procedures may be:

  • written, verbal, computer-based or in some other format

Handle data 

Handle data may include:

  • calculating means, ranges, mean of means and standard deviations (using appropriate calculation aids)
  • entering data into a software package
  • recording data either in writing or electronically
  • other required manipulations of the data

Control chart 

Control charts may include:

  • run
  • tally
  • mean/range
  • attributes
  • other relevant charts


Random variation is the term used in statistical control to refer to those variations for which no cause can be found


Non-random (also called identifiable cause, assignable cause or special cause) are those variations for which a cause can be found and so the cause of the variation eliminated. Non-random variation may also be used to predict possible breaches of the control limits

Control limits 

Control limits (also referred to as process capability) are those limits within which the process will operate if it is 'under control'

Cost of non-conformance 

Cost of non-conformance includes:

  • reprocessing/rework
  • expediting
  • unplanned service
  • excess inventory
  • complaint handline
  • downtime
  • returns
  • scrap
  • labour costs
  • material costs
  • infrastructure costs/overhead
  • utility costs

Appropriate limits 

Appropriate limits may include:

  • 1 sigma warning limits
  • 2 sigma warning limits
  • 3 sigma control limits
  • 6 sigma limits

Unit Sector(s)

Unit sector

Competitive systems and practices

Custom Content Section

Not applicable.