What is Design?
Design is the translation of the
customer requirements into a form
suitable for operation, production, or
use. It may include redesign to cater
for ease of operation or changes in
Design may encompass both research
and development and all of these are
Quality is simply means meeting the
requirements. The totality of features
and characteristics of a product or
service that bear on its ability to satisfy
stated or implied needs.
Quality of design is a measure of how
well the product or service is designed
to achieve its stated purpose.
Design and The
The most important feature of the
design with regards to achieving quality,
is the specifications. Specifications
must also exist at the internal supplier/
customer interfaces to pursue company
Quality of design goes beyond the
product or service design and its ability
to meet the customer requirements.
Design and The
The correctness of the actual design
process has a deep influence on the
quality performance of any organization
and much can be learned by examining
successful organizations and how their
strategies for research, design and
development are linked to the effort of
marketing and operations
Design and The
When design for quality there three
important terms we should understand.
Research is the discovery of novel
(work of fiction) techniques, ideas,
information or systems. Market research
is clearly part of research.
Development is the improvement of
existing techniques, ideas or systems.
Design and The
Design is the translation of the customer
requirements into a form suitable for
operation, production or use. It may
include redesign to cater for ease of
operation or charges in specification
In the face of aggressive innovation, an
organization has four main choices:-
Stick to its old services and products
and try to fight off new product.
Search for unexploited market niches to
safeguard its sales volume
Update its services and products to stay
side by side with the competition
Develop completely new products or
Example, Research in Motion with
Innovation entails both the invention
and design of radically new products
and services, embodying novel idea,
discoveries and advanced technologies,
and continuous development and
improvement of existing products,
services and process to enhance their
performance and quality.
It may be directed at reducing costs of
production or operations throughout the
life cycle of the product or services
Commitment to Quality
Commitment to quality in the most
senior management helps to build in
quality throughout the design process
and to ensure good relationships and
communication between various groups
and functional areas.
Commitment to Quality
Designing customer satisfaction into
products and services contributes
greatly to competitive success.
Example, Sony, Sumsung and Dell
The Design Process
The design process often concerns technological
innovation in response to, or in anticipation of,
changing market requirements and trends in
technology(Example Apple with I pod products)
In order to have impressive records of product-led
growth an organization have to demonstrate a
state of the art approach to innovation based on
The Design Process
1. Strategic Balance to ensure that both old and new product
developments are important. Updating old products and services
ensures continuing cash generation from which completely new
products may be funded.
2. Top Management approach to design to set the tone and ensure that
commitment is the common objective by visibly supporting the design
effort. Direct control should be concentrated on critical decision
points, since over-meddling by very senior people in day-to-day
project management can delay and discourage staff
3. Teamwork to ensure that, once projects are underway, specialist
inputs, e.g. from marketing and technical experts, are fused and
problems are tackled simultaneously. The teamwork should be urgent
yet informal, for too much formality will stifle initiative, stylishness and
the fun of design
The Design Process
The extent of the design activity should not be underestimated.
Many people associate design with styling of products.
But for certain products and many service operations, the
secondary design considerations are vital. For instance anyone
who has bought an 'assemble-it-yourself' kitchen unit will know
the importance of the design of the assembly instructions, for
example. Aspects of design which affect quality in this way are:
warranty details and their fulfillment
If quality design is taking care of all aspects of
the customer requirements, including cost,
production, safety and easy use, and
maintainability of products and services, then
designing must take place in all aspects of:
Identifying the need (including need for change);
Developing that which satisfies the need;
Checking the conformance to the need;
Ensuring that the need is satisfied.
Designing covers the work involved from the
identification of a problem to be solved, usually a
market need, through the development of design
concepts and prototypes to the generation of detailed
specifications or instructions required to produce the
artifact or provide the service. It is the process of
presenting needs in some physical form, initially as a
solution, and then as a specific configuration or
arrangement of materials, resources, equipment, and
The activities in designing include:
final product or service testing;
after-sales service and trouble-shooting.
Responsibility for design
Usually the design function sits between the marketing and the
operations functions. Its purpose is really to take the needs of
the market, as determined by the marketing department, and
translate them into such a form that they can be fulfilled within
the operating unit. It is clear that the decisions taken during the
design stage can have significant and very long-term effects on
the whole organization.
A badly designed piece of furniture, for example, will never sell
however well it is made; a poorly designed menu which offers
the wrong choices will not attract customers, however well it is
presented and advertised.
The importance of the design function cannot be overestimated, and its
organizational location is not easily defined. Three locations are commonly
1. Within the marketing department, on the basis that the marketing
department is the only source of detailed knowledge about the needs of a
customer. This is true both for products which involve high technology and
for services which are dependent on an extremely variable market. It is
particularly true for products and services designed to a customer's
specification, since the marketing departments are, effectively, the
customer's representative within the organization.
2. Within the operations department, on the basis that, providing an
accurate and comprehensive specification has been laid down by the
marketing department, it is essential that it should be executed as rapidly
and economically as possible. The organizational links between design
and operations need to be as tight as possible and this sort of
organization function will be satisfactory where the products or services
are standardized, requiring only minimum modification to make them
acceptable to the customer.
. As an independent unit, directly responsible to the top
management. The advantages of independence are clear: the
designers are not inhibited either by marketing or operations
and can, therefore, produce the most effective design. This
situation probably holds best where products or services are
genuinely in advance of the market.
This sort of design function may very well provide the stimulus
for the marketing department to 'create a market'. As with all
organizational problems, the design of the structure of
organization must be made on the basis of the detailed
requirement each organization. One thing, however, is clear -
close liaison must be maintained at all times between the
design, marketing and operational functions.
There is a strong relationship between
standardization and specification.
Standardization does not guarantee that the
best design or specification is selected.
It may be argued that the whole process of
standardizations slows down the rate and
direction of technological development affects
what is produced.
It is useful to define a specification.
The International Standards Organization (ISO)
define it in ISO 8402 (1986) as 'the document that
prescribes the requirements with which the product or
service has to conform. A document which does not
give a detailed statement or description of the
requirements to which the product or service must
comply cannot be regarded as a specification, and
this is true of much as literature.
The specification conveys the customer requirements to the
supplier to allow the product or service to be designed,
engineered, produced, or operated using conventional or
stipulated equipment, techniques, and technology.
The basic requirements of a specification are that it gives the:
performance requirements of the product or service;
parameters, such as dimensions, concentration, turn-
round-time, which describe the product or service
adequately (these should be quantified and include the
units of measurement);
materials to be used by stipulating properties
or referring to other specifications;
method of production or operations;
references to other applicable specifications
Seven new tools' for
Success at continual quality improvement requires an
integrated 'company-wide' approach, and all parts of
an organization must cooperate to produce
economically services and products which fully
satisfy the customer's needs.
To improve the design of a product or service 'seven
new tools, collectively known as quality function
deployment (QFD), may be used to address various
aspects of the design process.
Seven new tools' for
The 'seven new tools' are the:
1 affinity diagram;
2 interrelationship digraph;
3 tree diagram;
4 matrix diagrams or charts;
5 matrix data analysis;
6 process decision program chart (PDPC);
7 arrow diagram.
This tool is designed to take a central idea, issue
or problem and map out the logical or sequential
links among related factors. While this still
requires a very creative process, the inter-
relationship digraph begins to draw the logical
connections that surface in the affinity diagraph
The affinity diagram method allows some
organized creative patterns to emerge but the
inter-relationship digraph lets logical patterns
become apparent. This is based on a principle
that the Japanese frequently apply regarding the
natural emergence of ideas.
The systems flow/tree diagram (usually
referred to as tree diagram) is used to
systematically map out the full range of
activities that must be accomplished in
order to reach a desired goal.
The matrix diagram is the heart of the seven new tools. The purpose of
the matrix diagram is to outline the inter-relationships and correlations
between tasks, "functions or characteristics' and to show their relative
importance. L-shaped Matrix Diagram
This is the most basic form of matrix diagram. In the L-shape two
interrelated groups of items are presented in line and row format. It is a
simple two-dimensional representation that shows the intersection of
related pairs of items as shown in Figure 7.5. It can be used to display
relationships between items in all operational areas, including
administration, manufacturing, personnel, Rand D etc., to identify all the
organizational tasks that need to be accomplished and how they should
be allocated to individuals. In teamwork it is even more interesting if
each person completes the matrix individually and then compares the
coding with everyone in the work group.
Matrix data analysis
Matrix data analysis is used to take data
displayed in a matrix diagram and arrange it
so that it can be more easily viewed and
show the strength of the relationship between
In my conclusion design for quality aimed at meeting
customer’s requirement through studying the
designing process and identifying the problems in
time and solve them by meeting specified
performance criteria. The product or service being
designed can be produced, inspected, tested or
checked to provide satisfaction to the customer. All
these can be achieved through research and