Customer Satisfaction Survey vs. Supplier Satisfaction Survey

G

George Trybulski

#1
We all get surveys from our customers on what they require from us, but is there someone out there that has made up a survey that you sent to your customer to ask what they thought of your quality performance, ie: Customer Satisfaction feed back. If any one has this in text form, I would really appreciate getting a copy of it. THANKS !
 
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L

Lassitude

#2
I don't have one off hand, but I've seen questions like:

1. Have you had to contact our customer service in the last year? How would you rate our response?

2. Have deliveries been on time and intact (no damage)?

3. What can we do to improve our relationship?

Etc - just typical questions. Look at what customers ask you in their questionaires and I'm sure you'll come up with some ideas specific to your company and product.

[This message has been edited by Lassitude (edited 26 July 1999).]
 

Kevin Mader

One of THE Original Covers!
Staff member
Admin
#3
George,

Creating a Customer Survey is generally a long and challenging process. I would suggest that you get key folks in your organization together and discuss an approach on how to create one that will suit your organization. By trying to adapt someone else's survey, you may miss some key opportunities to discover things about your customers.

This is not to say that you can't adapt some basic questions as Lassitude lists above. Some are just that but just as important as the one's you will create. Since you are the authorities or experts on your product, you may have a pretty good idea of what questions you need to ask. For instance, what does your organization see as being the key driving factors for your business? Create questions around these factors. Since these factors vary from organization to organization, so will the format and question base of Customer Surveys. Yours needs to be specific to your needs.

Funny thing about perception, they are sometimes wrong. So questions you ask today (based on what you thought was important) may not make it into the revised survey. You may think people find so-and-so important, only to find that it is trivial. How many project are built about trivial items? Plenty! Also, what distinguishes a loyal customer from a satisfied customer? Find this out, tap into it immediately.

Anyway, I hope that I haven't muddled up the works. Back to the group...

Regards,

Kevin
 

Kevin Mader

One of THE Original Covers!
Staff member
Admin
#5
Supplier Satisfaction Survey – I would have to say that it is somewhat unexplored in these parts, but a good idea.

I don’t know of a ‘canned’ product, but you should be able to create your own with some crossfunctional involvement. For instance, I would say that the organizational ‘suppliers’ to your suppliers are probably Design Engineering, Purchasing, and Quality (there could be more depending on the level of detail you pursue or from the way your organization is structured, i.e. Accounts Payable). Since the Supplier is the ‘customer’ in this example, what is it that your customer (the supplier) values? Here are a few suggestions:

- Correctly stated terms, conditions, and requirements on a PO
- Correct revision drawings and specifications sent with the PO
- Proper lead-time for acquisition of raw materials and for processing
- Complete or accurate CAD files for tool/mold design
- Accurate “contact’ information (names, titles, departments, phone numbers, fax numbers)
- Returned Goods Authorization prior to returning goods
- Prompt and accurate payment according to terms & conditions
- Feedback on Quality levels submitted (PPM defective perhaps)

I am sure others here might be able to suggest other things. The key is to make some educated decisions about what to include in a survey based on the needs identified by the customer and for the needs of the organization. I would recommend that you find a book on how to create a survey and use it as a guide to develop your survey (neutral language in asking questions, open ended questions vs. questions the supplier will rate on a scale). Perhaps your survey will not be written. What questions will you ask? Who will ask them? Who will compile and report the data?

There are a couple of books that I have read that give advice as how to create a Customer Satisfaction Survey that can help you to develop your Supplier Satisfaction Survey. “Measuring Customer Satisfaction” by Bob Hayes ISBN 0-87389-362 and my favorite, “Improving Your Measure of Customer Satisfaction” by Terry Vavra ISBN 0-87389-4057. Both books will guide you through the survey design.

Regards,

Kevin
 
A

Al Dyer

#6
Although supplier satisfaction is a good idea it would be very low on the priority list. In my view the supplier should be doing a customer satisfaction survey on me.

Suppliers are to be developed and helped. What would I do if a supplier sent me a report that noted I was a "bad" customer? I know what I would do.

ASD...
 
T

tomvehoski

#7
I believe that a supplier satisfaction survey is a great idea. I never had a chance to implement one back when I spent all of my time as a Supplier Quality Engineer. I lost count of how many "supplier problems" were actually the fault of my company (customer). Examples include:

- Late delivery of packaging. True cause - manufacturing never told purchasing (or supplier) that production level was doubling. Supplier was not psychic.

- Supplier built parts wrong. True cause - engineering supplied incorrect print.

- Parts not manufactured when buyer called to check on late delivery. True cause - buyer never sent PO.

- Electronic boards failed. True cause - assembly workers dropped, broke wires, shorted out, ran over with hi-lo, etc. Plant manager told them to send back for credit anyway.

I could go on. 99% of the time suppliers will just accept the blame, fix the problem and raise the price on the next job to cover it. Biggest problem is that the customer never fixes their bad systems, and therefore repeats the errors over and over (we did not have a quality system implemented, and management would not support one until "we had time"). Unless someone at the customer is watching for the true root cause, things never get better.

Actually I will be finishing a paper/presentation this weekend on this topic to present at the ASQ Customer Supplier Division conference in Louisville in November. If anyone else has ideas let me know - I will of course give credit where it is due.

Tom



[This message has been edited by tomvehoski (edited 10 August 2001).]
 
A

Al Dyer

#8
Do you really think that the customer really cares about supplier satisfation?

Let's get real. If the supplier does not produce an acceptable product, they will be a past supplier.
 

Kevin Mader

One of THE Original Covers!
Staff member
Admin
#9
Al,

I would have to agree that most customers do not care. It has been this way for so long that most organization only do "inch deep, mile wide" thinking as opposed to "mile deep, inch wide". As Tom points out in his post, many problems are the fault of the Customer and not supplier oriented.

A classic example here at our facility is with our failure to get production level drawings to the supplier. This occurs about 10% of the time. The result is that our supplier produces tooling and parts to preproduction drawings. The effects are wrong parts with wrong features, production delays, and missed product launches (promise dates to our customer), and early obsolescence of remaining parts (because we reworked the wrong revision parts at cost to us and scrapped a few along the way). I am sure there are more costs associated. So now we are in a bind, need replacement, and must disrupt our supplier's (do a dare say, partner) production planning to have them quickly make tooling adjustments, acquire replacement raw material, interrupt another job running for another customer (whom they'll have to explain a delay to), change over, run parts and ship them to us at premium freight. Cost, cost, cost. I know I am not a 'mile deep' but the point is made.

In a System, we must rely on each component. In this way, we must view our relationships much differently than we have in the past. Hardships are felt across boundaries as are our successes. We are one team.

Additionally, the cost for moving production of a component from one supplier to another is costly. It is better to work out issues than it is to change sources (obviously, this approach will not work every time). Build rapport and loyalty. Work together with other components (customers and supplier) to reduce cost, minimize variation, and improve quality.

Well, just a Monday opening thought.

Regards,

Kevin
 

CarolX

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#10
Hello all,

Very interesting thread. About 2 weeks ago, I visited a potential new customer, and went through their supplier education meeting. This customer was having so many "supplier" problems that were not related to the supplier, they began actually tracking how many of the problems were their own (i.e. wrong print revision, missing info on P.O., etc.). When they started this program, they were somewhere around 80/20, that is 80% of the problems were their own.

But I don't know how many suppliers would be willing to respond to a SSS, for fear of loosing business. I know we wouldn't want to answer one...even for our "good" customers.

Just my one cent worth (ya know, bad economy and all, gotta pinch them when I can)...LOL

CarolX
 
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