Voice of the Customer

Posted on November 5, 2009 by

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Katy sifts through customer survey responses. “I like my cookies to be large, with lots of chocolate chips.” “Cookies must be chewy and soft.” “I need cookies that have the least amount of fat and calories as possible.” She is seeking to understand the Voice of the Customer (VOC). Understanding customer needs is foundational in Six Sigma. Customers may be both internal and external; and their needs may be both stated and unstated. There are many ways to learn what customers need, such as: individual or group interviews, surveys, focus groups, active or passive observations, and complaint logs. Reviewing data should lead to a better understanding of customer segmentation and customer needs. This is not something that can safely be performed once since customers change as do their needs. Customers of Katy’s Cookie Factory may prefer rich, buttery cookies today, but there could be a trend in the future towards concern about consuming butter and a preference for lower-fat foods. The key is to listen to what the VOC is saying and meet their changing needs.

Posted in: Six Sigma