Voice of the Customer (IV-40)

  • Customer identification
  • Customer data
  • Customer requirements

Customer Identification

In Six Sigma, quality is contingent upon the customer.  The customer defines quality and sets the expectations.  It is not always evident with the customer’s.  The receiver of the next operation and internal department can be thought of as a customer that would be an internal customer.  While the external customer of a process can be a participant.  If the purchases distributor, then they may not be the final customer.  Consequently, it is not always obvious who the actual ultimate Custer is very in lives part of the challenge of customer identification.

The External Customers are the most important part of any business.  If one can identify them and understand their requirements, then products can be designed that they (the External Customer) wants to buy.

Customers attempt to weigh the overall value of goods and services by considering cost, quality, features, and availability factors (CQFA).  this seemed to have a value grade is the one that business is use to compete for customers.  Consequently, businesses must excel in at least one category in order to be successful in winning the customer.

The voice of the customer (VOC) is critical to the businesses success.  Furthermore Six Sigma green belts (SSGBs) and Six Sigma black belts (SSBBs) must consider how both internal and external customers can be identified, and what their requirements might be in order to understand and improve the business processes.

Internal Customers (IV-41)

Anyone in the company who was affected by the product of service as it is being generated.


External Customers (IV-42)

  • End users
  • Intermediate customers
  • Impacted parties (IV-43)

Meeting external customer’s needs can be a complex process or sequence of processes

External Customer Identification (IV-43)

External customers may be divided into various customer groups in order to better identify their requirements and to understand possible market niches.

  • High profit margin                              * Competition in the market
  • Risk of market                                      * Growth in market


Customer Service (IV-44)

A customer driven company is the core to business in America and to successful six sigma engagements.

  • customer needs
  • customer focus
  • Measures and results
  • Proper employees and proper training
  • Recognition and rewards

There is a need to understand the voice of the customer (VOC), provide a vision, provide training, improve the process, find and develop response matrix, measured the results.  According to Whiteley (1991), the following information is essential:

  • Determined who the customers are
  • Know those customer’s needs and expectations
  • Work to satisfy those needs and expectations

Customer Retention

It is been founded current customers are worth as much as 5 times more than new customers.  The cost of holding and retaining a  current customer is only 1/4  the cost of acquiring a new customer.

The lifecycle of a customer is defined in 5 categories:

  • Acquisition
  • Retention
  • Attrition
  • Defection
  • Reacquisition

Customer Loyalty (IV-45)

The value of customer loyalty is not measured on the basis of one gigantic purchase, but rather on his/her lifetime were.  Customer’s account for a higher proportion of sales and proper growth.  Customer retention generates repeat sales.  It is cheaper to retain customers.  Customer loyalty is something that must be demonstrated through the act of execution, trust, or delightful services.  Loyal customers become our partners.