What is it: A HOQ (House of Quality) or otherwise known as a QFD (Quality Function Deployment) is used to translate customer requirements to engineering specifications. It is a link between customers - design engineers - competitors - manufacturing, it helps to prioritize action needed to meet customer requirements. The main features of QFD are a focus on meeting market needs by using actual customer statements, its effective application of multidisciplinary teamwork and
the use of a comprehensive matrix for documenting information, perceptions and decisions.
Why use it: It is very powerful as it incorporates the voice of the customer in the designs - hence it is likely that the final product will be better designed to satisfy the customer's needs. Moreover, it provides an insight into the whole design and manufacturing operation (from concept to manufacture) and it can dramatically improve the efficiency as production problems are resolved early in the design phase. Some of the benefits of adopting QFD have been: documented as:
Where to use it: In the preliminary design stage of a new product.
When to use it: QFD is applied in the early stages of the design phase so that the customer wants are incorporated into the final product. Furthermore it can be used as a planning tool as it identifies the most important areas in which the effort should focus in relation to our technical capabilities.
How to use it: QFD involves developing a matrix that includes customer preferences and product attributes and usually follows the following steps:
1. Learn what each element represents,
Once this is completed regular reviews and updates require minimum time. Remember that the benefits from an appropriately developed QFD chart are very big compared with the effort - put focus on the issues that are important to the customer.