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Innovative Tool for Specifying Customer Requirements

[+] Author Affiliations
Asko Ellman

Tampere University of Technology, Tampere, Finland

Robert Wendrich

University of Twente, Enschede, Netherlands

Tarja Tiainen

University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland

Paper No. DETC2014-35220, pp. V01BT02A038; 5 pages
  • ASME 2014 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 1B: 34th Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Buffalo, New York, USA, August 17–20, 2014
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4629-2
  • Copyright © 2014 by ASME


This paper presents the design and development of an App based tool for specification of customer requirements (CR) for product development. The most Quality Function Deployment (QFD) tools and methods are system based or used as an Excel document for specification and evaluation. Nowadays tool usage, functionality, and interaction can be designed simple, effective and aesthetically pleasing by means of native apps. They can be opened and accessed directly, much quicker, are rewarding, and enhance the user experience, even offline. Furthermore, the dynamic and playful use of an app will stimulate the interaction, motivation, and communication across various information platforms.

We describe and show the initial testing and experiments with the Customer Priorities (CP) App and present preliminary findings and results from our ongoing research. This in turn leads and enables designers and engineers to move closer to the future users, understand their wishes, values and choices between passive and active needs. QFD defines mapping between customer requirements and product characteristics. In practice this means that a customer compares two product characteristics at time and defines which one is more important or if they are equally important.

The App was tested in a user experiment. We considered a Smartphone as a design example. We asked test users to compare and specify their preferences for ten given product characteristics. Our test user group consists of 32 participants both from Finland and the Netherlands. They were either graduated students or teaching staff from a university. We show preliminary results and findings from user experiment and testing of the App. Furthermore qualitative results achieved in interview with test users will be presented.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME



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