"Time was when a man could order a pair of shoes directly from the cobbler. By measuring the foot himself and personally handling all aspects of manufacturing, the cobbler could assure the customer would be satisfied," lamented Dr. Yoji Akao, one of the founders of QFD, in his private lectures.
Quality Function Deployment (QFD) was developed to bring this personal interface to modern manufacturing and business. In today's industrial society, where the growing distance between producers and users is a concern, QFD links the needs of the customer (target quality) with design, development, engineering, marketing, manufacturing, service and other functions of the organization through systematic deployment..
Glenn Mazur, executive director of QFD Institute, offers this explanation.
As a quality system that implements elements of Systems Thinking with elements of Psychology and Epistemology (knowledge), QFD provides a system of comprehensive development process and customer requirements management (CRM) for:
QFD does so by seeking both spoken and unspoken needs, identifying positive quality and business opportunities, and translating these into actions and designs by using transparent analytic and prioritization methods, empowering organizations to exceed normal expectations and provide a level of unanticipated excitement that generates value.
The QFD methodology can be used for both tangible products and non-tangible services, including manufactured goods, service industry, software products, IT projects, business process development, government, healthcare, environmental initiatives, and many other applications as seen in the QFD Symposium Transactions.
Since its inception in 1960s, QFD tools, techniques, applications have and continue to advance to meet the changes in modern business models and global markets. This is evidenced by the new ISO 16355 standard for QFD.
Your project —whether it involves a new product development, business strategy overhaul, customer requirements management (CRM), improvement of an existing product/process, or academic research — is a professional endeavor that deserves professional care and execution, using the current best practice methods and training.
For successful implementation and effective use of your resources, we recommend you consider these professional level training: