NOWECO Management Software

Quality Function Deployment Software


Processing QFD with PathMaker

Applying QFD is much more than documenting the House of Quality. The House of Quality is just an option to display an outcome anyway. It is much more important to focus on the QFD process which is the way that ends in an outcome. The format of displaying the outcome or the results of the QFD process is absolutely secondary.

The general question that is asked in QFD is what serves to achieve a specific outcome. It is typically called the translation process, e.g. which design will serve the customer requirements. Having just a house of quality at the end of the process is not satisfactory because it just shows the result of the analysis but it forgets about the reasons. Whenever we value, estimate or give preference within QFD it should documented why we did so. Just having the House of Quality does not allow to replicate the process. We do not know about the discussions, the driving or restraining forces that were basic to the decisions. Focussing on the QFD process rather than just the outcome collects the knowledge gained during the QFD process. It becomes re-usable.

PathMaker is an excellent solution to define all the steps required to run QFD as it contains management tools that assist in building the content of a QFD matrix. PathMaker records the discussion and analysis so that you can re-enter into the process and learn about the reasons of past decisions or analytic results.

QFD steps within PathMaker

  • Getting right key customer requirements: PathMaker's Brainstorm tool is very helpful when collecting customer requirements which later can be grouped in the Affinity Diagram. Discussions will be able to clarify requirements amd often lead to a better understanding.
  • Ratings: Whenever ratings are employed (e.g. with regard to the importance of the customer requirements) a tool is helpful that can manage the ratings - like PathMaker's Consensus Builder.
  • Discussions. These are contributions by the diverse people involved in the project. In order to bring them together PathMaker allows for virtual teams which means that the team members do not need to meet on a specific time at a determined location. This way you even can build teams where the team members are located in different time zones.
  • Analysis of relationships: Whenever relationships need to be displayed (e.g between customer requirements and features/performances) PathMaker's Cause and Effects tool is excellent to visualise such relationships.

Quality Function Deployment (QFD)-Matrix in PathMaker

At the end of a QFD project the results need to be recorded somewhere. PathMaker provides forms on QFD that enable you to create a QFD matrix. This QFD matrix can be included in the project pathway on which the entire QFD process is defined. Typical elements of the The QFD matrix are:

  • List the Key Customer Requirements
  • Rate the importance of the Key Customer Requirements
  • List competitive products and your own current and planned products.
  • Rate products (competition and own ones) against customer requirements.
  • Translate customer requirements into product features or technologies
  • Rate the relationships between requirements and features
  • List the technical or performance data for each key feature or technology, for yourselves and your competition.

These forms are just an example. PathMaker lets you design your own forms in its Forms tool.

The PathMaker Form on Quality Function Deployment (QFD)

qfd quality function deployment 1
qfd quality function deployment 2

Downloads and further information

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Excerpt of a pathway for a balanced scorecard

PathMaker - Beyond QFD

Running a QFD project with PathMaker is just one out of lots of management projects you can do with PathMaker. Further examples include:

PathMaker, Software for effective management projects: Version

PathMaker is available in two versions:

  • PathMaker
    which is a desktop-based software solution. Click on PathMaker to learn more about this solution.
  • ipathmaker
    is a web-based solution. Click on ipathmaker to learn more about this solution.

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