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    charles tippett

    Hi. I echo jonathan’s comments about QFD. Can be used equally well in an Improve Phase or as a stand alone tool.
    We learned at Xerox to  use QFD as 1 house or all 3 houses.
    House 1: VOC to Critical Customer Requirements
    House 2: CCR’s to Process Characteristics
    House 3: Process Characteristics to Process ControlsI would also agree that using it within the context of a Six Sigma Process is right when the problem is not well understood.
    What i’m interested in is: HOw are folks using QFD in a Define Phase?



    Interesting subject guiding communication within design and optimization projects (DMADV / DMAIC). Hope I can add to the discussion with the below.
    At the moment I am using 4 houses reflecting our NPD process – Concept (sub functionality in the system) / Design (materialization of identified function) / Process (method of making / Make (setting of method).
    I use QFD not strictly within 1 phase; it starts with identification of functional needs (performance, efficiency …etc…) of the customer and their constraints (use of material, energy, money …etc…), this is what I call Define. Then I make a Measure of the identified issues in the system and how to measure them – in a way this is setting a target flag for the development. Then it is to Analyse how we can cover the needs by a certain concept – it is about the relationship between the what and the how. The how is the real concept (Design). Compare this concept with what one has at capabilities is defining use of capabilities as is, optimizing capabilities or brainstorm for new capabilities (breakthroughs). This will be guided to the define phase of the design phase of the project. There this process is repeated between concept (product spec) and design (part spec), design and process (method char) …etc…
    Coupling with FMEA is made by making the improvement in the design or the process and test it and compare it (Verification) with the set measure (the target of the project / subproject / task …etc…). This is on documenting (modelling) capabilities (strength and weaknesses) covering the needs (specs) of the customer (kind of risk assessment of doing the business).
    Hopes this gives an impression on how I use the QFD tool within the projectmanagement task. For me it is a handy tool also to segment the project in managable parts and keep hartbeat in improvement jumps/steps.

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