V.B.1 Customer needs
Quality function deployment (QFD), also known as the house of quality, is a relationship matrix technique used to systematically translate a customer’s requirements/ wants into operational requirements, and communicate the customer’s voice, in understandable terms, downward though the organization. QFD translates the customers’ voice into product or service characteristics that when present can affect customer satisfaction.
Quality function deployment (QFD) has been used to develop products that delight the customer by providing features that are beyond their stated requirements. In many cases, the customer did not know that these options were possible, so they were not on a list of needs or priorities. By comparing the customer’s requirements to product and service features, the company typically focuses on identifying and prioritizing the agreements and gaps. From this analysis, innovative new offerings are more likely to become apparent. These can provide a greater probability of moving the company into the “delighting” quality level. Findings from a competitive analysis may also identify opportunities for significant improvement.
Quality function deployment (QFD) is a method developed in Japan beginning in 1966 to help transform the voice of the customer into engineering characteristics for a product. Yoji Akao, the original developer, described QFD as a "method to transform qualitative user demands into quantitative parameters, to deploy the functions forming quality, and to deploy methods for achieving the design quality into subsystems and component parts, and ultimately to specific elements of the manufacturing process." The author combined his work in quality assurance and quality control points with function deployment used in value engineering.
The house of quality, a part of QFD, is the basic design tool of quality function deployment. It identifies and classifies customer desires, identifies the importance of those desires, identifies engineering characteristics which may be relevant to those desires, correlates the two, allows for verification of those correlations, and then assigns objectives and priorities for the system requirements. This process can be applied at any system composition level (e.g. system, subsystem, or component) in the design of a product, and can allow for assessment of different abstractions of a system. The house of quality appeared in 1972 in the design of an oil tanker by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.
Sounds complicated doesn’t it? It’s not as complicated as it sounds. This resource will introduce you to the basic concepts of Quality Function Deployment and provide you with some tools to get you started.
Quality Management BOK Reference
V Customer Focused Organizations
V.B Customer Relationship Management
V.B.1 Customer needs - Use quality function deployment (QFD) to analyze customer needs in relation to products and services offered. Use the results of the analysis to prioritize new, future development in anticipation of changing customer needs.
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