A Cause and Effect Matrix is a tool to help you select steps (X) of a process that have the highest impact on your output (Y).
The output (Y) of your process are those things that are required for success (i.e. timeliness, accuracy, cost).
Y’s (outputs) are assigned value based on the impact to the success of the overall project.
The matrix will help you determine what steps (X) have the greatest impact on your project outputs (Y).
Example: Y=f(x1, x2, x3,…)
Cost=f(time, number of employees, materials)