Introduction: How to Create a Customer Requirements and Market Analysis Chart

In this Instructable you will be shown how to create a customer requirement and market analysis chart.  Creating this chart is a key part in the engineering design process.  It will help further your knowledge of who you are designing for, what they need and want in your design as well as identifying potential competitive products or services.

- Consolidate your research into customer requirements (Voice Of the Customer - VOC)
- Evaluate the market available to your target customers – identify potential competitive products or services.
- Specify customer requirements that will guide your design efforts.

You Will Need:
- Microsoft Excel 2010 or later
- Proficiency in Excel
- Prior research or knowledge of consumer
- Project charter completed 

Aprox. Time to Complete: 1 hour

Step 1: Create a Template for the Chart

Open Microsoft excel 2010 or later and create the chart template based off of the PDF provided.  You will be using the template as you complete each step.  In the following steps the photo that is included with the step shows an example of what is being described.

Step 2: Define the Opportunity Problem

In a one sentence statement, describe the problem you have identified in the "Define Opportunity Problem (from Project Charter)" section of the template.  This should come strait from your project charter document.

Step 3: Market Analysis - Benchmarking

In the "Market Analysis - Benchmarking" section list the current conditions that your customers are experiencing.  Focus on problems, challenges, opportunity, and choices.  The information here should reflect your research that you have already done on your customer.  Give specific facts and be detailed in your description.

Step 4: List the Customers Involved in Your Project

List each one of your customers under the column labeled Voice of the Customer and leave plenty of room underneath.  Try and narrow down your list to two or three customers.

Step 5: List the Requirements for Each Customer

Properly understanding customer requirements can be a time-consuming and difficult process.  You should make an educated guess of your customer's requirements based on what research you have.  Write each requirement as a quote from the customer as they would say it.  Try avoid technical quotes and use common language in which your customer would use.  List these in the column labeled Voice of the Customer, underneath the appropriate customer heading.  Add more rows if needed.

Step 6: Rate the Importance of Each Requirement for Each Customer

Using the customer requirement rating scale with units of 9, 3, or 1, rate each customer requirement as to its importance to that customer.  The scale can also include in between numbers such as 4 or 6 based on how you feel they should be ranked.  This rating should be an educated guess based off your research that you previously conducted.  Refer to Market Analysis - Benchmarking section of the chart to help in your ratings.  

Step 7: List Any and All Competing Product or Systems

List what is currently used to solve the identified problem as well as what is used to salve similar problems.  Identify as many competing products/systems as you can and list these in the options columns.  

Step 8: Identify How People Are Dealing With the Problem Today

Identify at least four existing solutions to the problem you have identified.  In the top cell labeled Option 1, sketch or find an illustration of the first solution and provide a few sentences of description if needed.  The entire column is available for the description and an illustration.  Do the same for the other three options.

Step 9: Identify How Well the Competing Products/Systems Meet the Customer Requirements You Have Identified

For each option use the option preference rating scale of 9, 3, or 1 to rate how well the option meets the customer requirements.  Repeat for each option.  The scale can also include in between numbers such as 4 and 6.

Step 10: Include a Reference List

Document your sources.  List web sources by full web address and date/time accessed.  Use proper reference documentation for printed sources.  The majority of your sources will be where you got your research information.

Step 11: Overall Video of Each Step in Order

The video below will show each step in order.  They will be highlighted in yellow in the order that they should be completed.  To access the video click on the link and then click on the title of the video at the new page.  You will be able to preview the video once it is saved to your computer.

Step 12: Conclusion

With a completed consumer requirements and market analysis chart you will have a better understanding of your consumers and potential competitive products or services.  Additionally your consumer requirements will be able to guide you in your design efforts.  With the consumer requirements and market analysis chart completed you are now ready to proceed to the next step in your design process. 

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