• Bionik, Biomimicry, Biomimétisme, Biomimética ...
  • ... how does nature do it?
Search Menu

Method Combination: QFD

As stated in the last article, I like to explore method combinations. Therefore, here’s another methodology combination for you. In 2015, I was invited to do a lecture on this, together with the QFD expert Jutta Saatweber. Very interesting!

QFD – Quality Function Deployment – is about translating customer requests, wishes and needs into product respectively tech requirements.

That is quite a “low key” explanation. There’s a lot to this method, it is quite … industrialised; used by big manufacturing companies.

One major tool is the House of Quality. It supports the exchange between developer & customer and helps to prioritise economically.

House of Quality Step 1

Start with the customer. What is important to your customer? WHY does he/she need and want the product?

House of Quality Step 2

Second step – how important are these requests (aka values) to the customer?

House of Quality Step 3

List the product requirements (meaning characteristics and functions, HOW do you do it).

House of Quality Step 4

Check for overlaps with the customer values and qualify the overlaps – you can use symbols to do that. No symbol, no overlap. 🤨

House of Quality Step 5

Rate the product requirements based on overlaps, importance and efficiency. Look for corroborative and for disagreeing requirement respectively function pairs. It is suggested to use symbols here, too – building the roof of your house of quality.

House of Quality Step 6

Now let’s say “req 2” and “req 3” contradict each other, like… a vacuum cleaner should clean efficiently (good floor contact) and move easily (light floor contact). That’s a classic TRIZ question right there!

House of Quality + TRIZ

Now, as I am a BIG advocate for getting technicians and engineers on board with eco friendly solutions – that’s one method to include nature, as customer and as a role model, too.

House of Quality + Biomimicry

I know. A bit much to chew on! But I think it is an interesting combination – so I wanted to tell you about it. Try the basic house model with a product you know, to get a feel for the possibilities – maybe it’s a helpful tool for you, too.

Link Tips:

Wikipedia article » (basic explanation & link collection)

German QFD Institute » (in German)

International QFD Institute » (in English)