The Need for Change
Nothing will annoy or frustrate your customers more quickly than unreliable products or services. And once a customer becomes a “detractor,” it is challenging to change their opinion. There are many reasons to improve the reliability of your manufacturing, delivery, and/or service functions, including:
- Customer Expectations: Customers expect you to deliver quality products. If not, they will look for alternatives. Quality is critical to customer retention and the ability to charge premium pricing.
- Reputation: Poor quality or a product failure that results in a product recall will damage your reputation. This risk is enhanced with the growing importance of social media and product review sites that allow disgruntled customers to tell millions how unhappy they are with your company.
- Competitive Differentiation: Strong product reliability plays a key role in differentiating highly competitive markets.
- Standards: Products that consistently meet and comply with standards and safety requirements in regulated markets will help you win new customers or enter new markets.
- Cost: Poor quality increases costs in many ways, from scrap and rework in the manufacturing plants, warranty replacement, return shipping costs and, in some cases, legal fees.
The Struggle to Get Going
Companies often lack effective quality control in their manufacturing plants to prevent defective products from leaving their facilities. It’s not uncommon to also lack the expertise and tools to perform proper root cause analysis on product defects. As a result, defects are left unresolved, product design changes aren’t making a difference, and the customer experience with the product isn’t improved. The critical ingredient to making effective improvement is your customer’s voice. Too often we see companies approach problems from the company’s own perspective. Instead, you must approach the problem from the focal point of your customer’s own experience.
How We Will Help
At the Rendement Group, we help companies improve the quality and reliability of their products via the six sigma methodology, partnering with you to:
- Build the (financial) case for product improvement
- Translate the customer’s experience with your product into design improvements
- Determine the vital few focus areas for improvement
- Develop a program structure that includes a resource plan and organizational structure
- Train internal subject matter experts in the process improvement methodology