Understanding Customer Needs: Software
Quality Function Deployment and the
Voice of the Customer
QFD: Origin and Introduction
Problems of Traditional QFD Applied to Software
Modern QFD for Software
The Blitz QFD Process
Implementing Software QFD
QFD: Origin and Introduction
Quality Function Deployment supports design at the “fuzzy front end” when the paper (or the computer screen) is completely blank:
It makes interaction with users efficient
Improves communication among developers
Optimizes design from the user perspective
Supports quick-hit design opportunities
Can be performed in a tailored step-wise way
Offers tools and techniques for risk analysis
Enables object-oriented development to be customer focused and value driven
Traditional QFD Applied to Software
Traditional Quality Control can only reduce negative quality.
QFD arose from two insights:
Quality is designed-in: it must be produced from the very beginning rather than designing a product and then fixing or correcting it.
Customer perspective: quality must always be from the customer’s perspective, not just from those of the engineers and developers.
Traditional vs. Modern Quality Systems
History of QFD
QFD originated in Japan more than 40 years ago.
It has been used in the USA since 1984.
QFD has been applied to software development and software products for more than 20 years.
NEC IC Microcomputers Ltd. won a Deming Prize in 1987 for software QFD.
Software QFD has been used in North America by
AT&T Bell Labs, HP, IBM, and Texas Instruments.
QFD in the Development Process
Four stages of QFD application to software development: 1.
Analysis: What the customer wants documented in a specification. Design: How the product will work for the customer documented in a design.
Development: Build the product for the customer and test it.
Implementation: Deliver/install the product and support it on the customer’s site.
Please note the customer focus of this process.
Incoherent Software Development
Coherent Software Development
QFD Focuses on Priority
Japan Industrial Standard Q 9025 defines
QFD as follows:
“… a supporting technique for organizations to achieve effective and efficient performance improvement of management system and provides methods for deployment and realization of the voice of the consumer from product quality characteristics and product elements to process elements. Furthermore, it provides methods for identifying operation or job function that is important in assuring product quality.”
Use of QFD
Standard Q 9025 has been designed for use by organizations requiring the following:
Identification of voices of the consumer and compilation of such voices in the form that can be reviewed easily
Identification of the design elements necessary to realize market and competitive advantage needs
Quantitative assessment of required quality and quality characteristics to be prioritized
Determination of design quality in the planning and development stages
Early identification of technology to overcome bottlenecks
Product development process from a total perspective including quality, cost, productivity, and reliability
The Four-Phase Model of QFD
Phase 1: The “House of Quality” customer attributes/quality characteristics matrix
Phase 2: The Parts Deployment quality characteristics/parts characteristics matrix
Phase 3: The Process Planning part characteristics/process parameters matrix