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- QF2D
- Publications / Related Publications
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After trialling the Quality Factor (QF) technique, a list of improvement points has been identified, such as:
  • QF applies for ex-post evaluation purposes
  • QF applies the ISO/IEC 9126:1991 standard set of quality characteristics
  • QF approaches a possible way to match stakeholders’ viewpoints: any new way?
  • QF calculation use several tables: it is possible to reduce the number and simplify the procedure?
In order to provide answers to these points, Buglione and Abran thought to elaborate an improved QF technique based on a well known and proven TQM tool, the Quality Function Deployment (QFD). The new technique is called Quality Factor through QFD (QF2D).

QFD is a method originated in the late ‘60s in Japan as a means of translating customer requirements (the so-called “Voice of the Customer”) into appropriate technical requirements throughout the development and production of a product. In the ‘80s this method was introduced in North America and since then it has received a widespread diffusion and adoption all over the world, expanding his initial focus on the product to the whole production chain (the “4 phases of QFD”: HoQ (or Design), Parts (or Details), Process, Production).

QFD includes a series of matrixes, which are the tools used to represent data but the most commonly used matrix is the “House of Quality” (HoQ). This matrix approach represents a good communication tool, offering to express a balanced consideration of requirements and providing a mechanism to communicate hidden knowledge through the organisation, but is the means and not the end. The real value is represented by the sharing of communication and decision-making among people of the different functional departments involved in the product development, from Marketing to Product Support. QFD helps development personnel in maintaining the correct focus on most relevant requirements, minimising the misunderstanding of the customer needs. For these reasons, QFD represents an effective communication and quality-planning tool. QFD has traditionally been used in the manufacturing industry with great achievements, leading to remarkable reductions in overall project costs (e.g. 50%), project cycle time (e.g. 33%) and major increases in productivity (e.g. 200%). Main reference for QFD is the QFD Institute. A paper about the selection of proper QFD tool can be downloaded clicking here. A free tool is Easy-QFD by Prof. Dr. Georg Herzwurm.
Some templates and tools MS-Excel based, also for QFD, are available at MathTools.net.
Maintaining the QF basic points, QF2D presents these main improvements:

  • simplification and rationalisation of the QF method;
  • summarisation of all data in one table;
  • flexibility according to a variable number of desiderata features of evaluated products
  • usage of histograms to prioritise in a visual way most relevant sub-characteristics and desiderata-features of evaluated products.
In particular:
  • use of the new ISO/IEC 9126:2000 standard series;
  • not only a product assessment but also a new development / maintenance is provided, with a circular feedback, covering the whole product lifecycle;
  • use of the ISO/IEC 14589-1 evaluation scale in order to express relationships in the HoQ table;
  • a greater granularity in the whole product evaluation, at the sub-characteristic level;
  • use of a single table to gather data and to visualise results for all participants from the three interest groups (E, S, T)

The following figure shows the two different matrices, the D (Development) and I (Implemented product) matrices used:

click to enlarge the photo
Figure 1- D and I matrices (click to enlarge the images)

Note that those matrices were previously named as D/M (Development/Mainteinance) and A (Assessment) ones.
Through a 6-steps procedure, as in QF, it is possible to calculate the final product quality value. Figure 2 shows the QF2D matrix:

click to enlarge the photo

Figure 2- A sample D Matrix (click to enlarge the images)

Click here to download an Excel template for calculating QF2D (87 Kb) and a Word document (here) containing the questionnaire and the ISO/IEC 9126:2000 definitions.
Note that you have to tailor the template according to the number of desiderata (in the D matrix) or products features (in the I matrix) chosen and use the ISO/IEC 14598-1 ratings in place of QF2D symbols. For all details, you can refer to the below cited publications describing the technique.

Publications / Related Publications
Publications / Related Publications L.Buglione & A.Abran, QF2D: a different way to measure Software Quality, IWSM2000 (10th International Workshop on Software Measurement), Berlin, Germany, October 4-6, 2000 click to download the paper Click to read the abstract
Publications / Related Publications L.Buglione & A.Abran, QF2D: a different way to measure Software Quality, included in: New Approaches in Software Measurement, 10th International Workshop on Software Measurement, IWSM 2000, Berlin, Germany, October 4-6, 2000. Proceedings, Dumke R. & Abran A. (Eds.), February 2001, ISBN 3-540-41727-3 (referred in ACM Portal) Click to read the abstract
Publications / Related Publications L.Buglione & A.Abran, QF2D: Quality Factor through QFD application, Qualita2001 (4th International Congress on Quality and Reliability), Annecy, France, March 22-23, 2001, ISBN 2-9516453-0-0, pp. 34-39 click to download the paper Click to read the abstract
Publications / Related Publications L.Buglione, N.Kececi & A.Abran, An Integrated Graphical assessment for managing Software Product Quality, Proceedings of the 12 ICSQ (12th International Software Quality Conference: Managing for Software Quality and Service Quality), Ottawa (Canada), October 28-30, 2002 click to download the paper Click to read the abstract

External References
External References Prasad V.C.S, An Approach to Quality Management at the Early Stages of New Product Development Using Technology Adoption Life-Cycle Concepts, ASQ Software Quality Professional, Vol.7, No.4, pp.27-33
External References Suryn W., Stambollian A., Dormeux J.C., Luc Bégnoche L., Software Quality Engineering – where to find it in Software Engineering Body of Knowledge (SWEBOK), Proceedings of 14th International Software Quality Management & INSPIRE Conference 2006, Southampton, Hampshire, UK 10-12 April 2006
External References Alvarez J.C., Panorámica del estado actual del modelo EFQM para la evaluación de la calidad del software, I° Simposio sobre avances en gestión de proyectos y calidad del software (AGPCSW04), Universidad de Salamanca, pp. 156-165, Salamanca (Spain), October 21-23 2004
External References Deeb S., Contribution méthodologique à la maîtrise conjointe de la qualité d’un produit et de ses processus de production par une modélisation des concepts qualité, Ph.D. Thesis, Université de Nancy H.Poincaré (France), March 2008
External References Fernandes M.F., Gestão de projectos de software com QFD e ABC, Dissertação de Mestrado em Sistemas de Informação, Universidade do Minho (Portugal), 15/12/2008

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