Project Management

Quality Function Deployment

last edited by: erin decaprio on Oct 7, 2006 6:15 PM login/register to edit this page

1 Applications
2 Procedures
3 Instructions
4 Example
5 References

A technique used within the business reengineering methodology that ensures, and provides a means for, cross-functional planning and communications. It is a technique used for converting customer needs and satisfiers into quantitative terms.


  • Ensures that quality is designed into products and services in the reengineered value stream.
  • Helps discover new ways of thinking about products and services, and develops better understanding among marketing, manufacturing, quality, and engineering groups.
  • Assists the organization to design higher quality, lower-cost products and services more quickly and easily.
  • Helps implement customer requirements into product characteristics.


  1. Obtain a list of customer needs and satisfiers.
  2. Create the initial matrix between the customer needs and satisfiers.
  3. Choose a weighting system to understand the affinity or relationships between customer needs and satisfiers.
  4. Update the matrix so that satisfiers are translated directly into product or service design requirements.
  5. The matrix can accommodate other information such as:
  • Competitive assessments
  • Specifications or target values
  • Correlations (between factors summarized in a matrix).
This information is the basis for the "House of Quality" (see example).


The matrix should identify specific customer satisfiers. Make certain the matrix relates customer needs and satisfiers to specific activity characteristics. The deliverable that is produced for this technique is a matrix that has weighted values in the cells.

To begin the QFD process, it is imperative to have identified customer needs and satisfiers, using appropriate information gathering techniques (see Focus Groups, Questionnaires, and Structured Interviews). Start assigning values to the matrix, using the identified clustering mechanism. These values help determine potential value streams for reengineering.

Think of the first matrix as a simple understanding between customer satisfiers and customer needs. The matrix is a first step only, because the initially discovered relationship between needs and satisfiers must be translated into service or product design requirements. The first matrix is simple, but it may create confusion, since sometimes customer needs are inconsistent or conflict with each other. For example, in the automotive industry, "reduced emissions" may be in conflict with "increased acceleration."

Both needs may not be easily satisfied in a simple matrix for deployment. Therefore, the matrix needs to be converted into a "House of Quality" matrix that considers other variables such as:

  • competitive valuations or assessments
  • target values
  • correlations between needs and satisfiers
Taken together, these variables help to distinguish between conflicting product/service design areas, the importance of satisfiers, and the relationships of satisfiers with each other.


quality function deployment house of quality


  1. Lawrence P. Sullivan. Policy Management Through Quality Function Deployment. Quality Progress, June 1988.
  2. Ronald M. Fortuna. Beyond Quality: Taking SPC Upstream. Quality Progress, June 1988.

last edited by: erin decaprio on Oct 7, 2006 6:15 PM login/register to edit this page


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