Use Data that is Meaningful
A couple of months ago, Joe wrote a great blog on Problem Solving Pitfalls. I have read that post few times. Partly because Joe and I made some of those mistakes together. Partly because I think there is another to add to it.
Just because data is being collected does not mean it is useful.
Too many times I have watched people (including myself) use data because it was available. It was not the data that would tell the story of the process. You may have to decide what data would be helpful and devise a way to collect the data. he data does not have to be what is available in a computer. Having it captured by hand is a viable way to collect the data. The data may only need to be collected for a specific amount of time during the problem solving process. Once the problem has been solved, there may be no need to collect the data.
This can be difficult but it will be well worth the effort in the long run. You will get a better picture of the problem you are trying to solve and in turn this will lead to an easier time getting to the root cause of the problem.