A Quality Function Deployment Approach Through Management and Technology Development

A Quality Function Deployment Approach Through Management and Technology Development

Chia Wei Lo (National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan), Ying Kai Liao (Nanhua University, Taiwan), Giang Nu To Truong (Nanhua University, Taiwan), Phuong Minh Binh Nguyen (Van Lang University, Vietnam) and Wann Yih Wu (Nanhua University, Taiwan)
Copyright: © 2021 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/IJABIM.20210701.oa29
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Corrugated paper industry is an indispensable industry and it has been developed for more than fifty years. Hence, it is important for a firm to find its core competence, study effective business strategies, and form a long-term competitive advantage. However, few researchers focus on the harmonizing between the operational problems and solutions from customers’ and suppliers’ angles. The purposes of this research are to analyze frequently encountered problems and to find appropriate solutions to upgrade production efficiency and business performance for the corrugated paper industry in Taiwan. This study mixes Quality Function Deployment and Analytic Hierarchy Process approach to find some operational problems and provide the solutions based on experts' experience. The findings are projected to deliver some significant contributions; academically, by professionally conducting further theoretical validation and by adopting suitable strategies to fit the needs of customers.
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Paper is one of daily necessities tightly related to our lives in many forms, such as newspaper, notebook, bill, tissue, cardboard box, and so on. With the progress of technology, the function and application of paper is getting more and more extensive (Lin & Zheng, 2017). In addition, the annual consumption of a piece of paper in a country not only represents a nation’s industrial, economic, and cultural condition; but also determines an index of life standard (Dahal, Henderson & Munn, 2013). Therefore, the rise and fall of the paper industry has become the vanguard index of developed countries. Recently, the paper industry in Taiwan has suffered from structural change of domestic industry; such as the rise of environmental protection consciousness, the migration of downstream industry, insufficient labors, saturated market, and other factors. These situations cause the paper manufacturing industry to face more competitions. Moreover, in the 21st century, the paper manufacturing industry is facing unforeseen changes because the globalization of politics, economics, society, and technological power offer unstoppable competition trends. Besides some public paper companies, currently, there are still hundreds of small and medium scale paper companies in Taiwan. Normally, they are middle-stream and down-stream paper processing companies with less information, R&D capabilities, and lower prices to engage in price competition for each company, leading to vicious circles. Hence, the paper industry needs to adapt to the environmental changes to execute more effective policies, such as cost-effective and labor-effective policy and identify internal and external operational problems.

Paper is a consumer-dedicated product that considers the cost, quality, function and concerns about the safety, comfort, and usability in different locations (Gavrilescu, Puitel, Dutuc & Craciun, 2012). Managers need to consider all of the factors above while trying to fulfill the needs of the customers. Under intensely competitive market circumstances, the corrugated paper industry is always endeavoring to streamline the organization to meet customer satisfaction and maintain a good relationship with business partners (Paryani, Masoudi & Cudney, 2010). Therefore, it is critical to improve the relationship and find appropriate solutions for the frequently encountered problems when cooperating with business partners. Furthermore, under the premise of sustainable management, the paper industry has to figure out the appropriate solutions for various kinds of organizational, technological, and operational issues; then set up internal and external strategies to control the cost and maximize the profit of a company (Jauhar Pant & Abraham, 2014). Quality Function Deployment (QFD) is an approach intended to service quality and product design. It aims to satisfy customers’ needs and then translate them into the targeted design and quality assurance throughout the production process (Chan & Wu, 2002). QFD is a well-known approach among companies to analyze the relationship between design requirements and customer requirements. The fundamental concern of QFD is the House of Quality (HOQ) (Temponi, Yen & Tiao, 1999). According to HOQ, customers’ needs can be transferred to engineer idea then integrate them into the part or components, characteristics, and the process operation.

Although QFD originated in the manufacturing industry, previous studies rarely used QFD to discuss the issue of the paper industry. Generally speaking, what customers in the paper industry need is good quality, low price, and precise delivery date. The quality and function deployment transforms customer’s needs into product design needs. It uses HOQ to meet the demanded quality to provide a guiding principle for the enterprise executive or decision makers. The advantages of QFD can also be applied in the paper industry by listening to the Voice of Customer (VOC) after integrating the function need; reduction of design change; reduction of production and service cost; and reduction of product development period.

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