Determining Customer Satisfaction in a Small Aerospace Job Shop

H

Hodgepodge

#1
We are a small aerospace job shop. We don't make anything complete, we merely perform in-process operations on customer-supplied product. The company president and the general manager (top management) talk directly to customers on a daily basis. Quoting, scheduling, clarifying, and firefighting.

I would guess that most small shops have top management just like ours, making decisions in attempt to satisfy customers every day and hearing about it when they fail. Data, on the other hand, may not be as easy to come by. If we had to make notes after every phone call or e-mail, we wouldn't get anything else done. AS9100 Section 8.4 requires "Analysis of Data ". We need to "analyze appropriate data to demonstrate the suitability of the quality management system…analysis of data shall provide information relating to …customer satisfaction."

What we do day-to-day keeps us in business.
Question 1: How much of this satisfies the requirement to monitor and measure customer satisfaction?

I understand that the requirement of section 8.4 relates to the effectiveness of the QMS. We log and track customer complaints. This data is used during Management Reviews. We also have adopted a method of monitoring customer satisfaction suggested by Craig Cochran in his book, "Customer Satisfaction: Tools, Techniques, and Formulas for Success", making "Call Reports". To make a call report, we ask a few "big picture" satisfaction related questions during normal customer interactions (See this article for a brief description: http://www.qualitydigest.com/sept06/articles/06_article.shtml). These are recorded (CAPA when immediate attention is required) and categorized, then used as input during management review.

Question 2: Is this adequate to satisfy the requirements of AS9100 Section 8.4 for evaluating the QMS regarding customer satisfaction?

Question 3: For small shops like us, is there something else we could or should do? Something that would add value?

Thank you
 
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Jen Kirley

Quality and Auditing Expert
Staff member
Admin
#2
Re: Determining Customer Satisfaction in a Small Job Shop

The customer doesn't need to be queried as to satisfaction of the weather, etc., and no long drawn out note taking is needed.

What matters is that learnings are made that help maximize the effectiveness and the relationship if possible.

You have mentioned firefighting. If a tally was made as to the type of problem while these sessions are taking place, before long the tally could look like a histogram. You can act on that data and comply with 8.4.

You might even get subtle enough to note that a certain type of problem was occurring most often with a particular part, material, process, or even day of the week/shift. When you find problems forming a pattern - even when discovered through informal discussions (I personally think most surveys are a wasteof time), you can

- improve the problem, then
- follow up for closure and
- hopefully spread the learnings to avoid the problem from recurring elsewhere.

If you do these things, 8.4 is being met, and possibly also 8.5, 8.5.1, 8.5.2, and 8.5.3.
 
#3
Hi,

I would like to share my experience of one audit client.The organisation is similar like yours and involved in plating activities and their top management do similar things like yours and this includes fire fightings.They had also problems with keeping records of customer satisfaction measurement and creating data to show to auditor.I was strict and asked the MR to atleast demonestrate that data analysis on customer satisfaction is done.They had no data so what to analyse:mg:.

The plating shop owner, a man of 80s and doing business for many years suggested that he receives more number of phone calls and e-mails from customers if there is a problem.If there is no problem no call and no mail.The data of number of calls and e mails received each month can be easily calculated.The owner asked me whether same is acceptable.I don't know whether my friends will accept the same or not but I offered to accept the same after a validation.For validation,I asked the owner to arrange talks with three customers, selected by me.His customers agreed that it is fact that they don't waste time in communicating with suppliers if there is no problem- related to delivery or quality.By next audit,they sharpened this idea and had strong data with more authenticity.Great:cool: learning

Please note that no problem does not always mean satisfaction.:agree1:


Are you not knowing how good are you doing with respect to quality and delivery and measure following atleast

1.Rejection at customer end/penalty by customer for poor quality/rejections
2.Number of times you are asking for deviation/concession
3.At what extent you are meeting delivery schedule.100% or 70%?
4.How many times your customer is issueing CARs on you.
5.Is your customer repeating orders?data!
6.Is your customer increasing business volume with you with the increase of their business?Data!

Though data related to these are not direct measurement of customer satisfaction but have strong relationship.

Wait little more and sure you will get many ideas,suitable for you.
 
H

Hodgepodge

#4
Re: Determining Customer Satisfaction in a Small Job Shop

The customer doesn't need to be queried as to satisfaction of the weather, etc., and no long drawn out note taking is needed.

What matters is that learnings are made that help maximize the effectiveness and the relationship if possible.

You have mentioned firefighting. If a tally was made as to the type of problem while these sessions are taking place, before long the tally could look like a histogram. You can act on that data and comply with 8.4.

You might even get subtle enough to note that a certain type of problem was occurring most often with a particular part, material, process, or even day of the week/shift. When you find problems forming a pattern - even when discovered through informal discussions (I personally think most surveys are a wasteof time), you can

- improve the problem, then
- follow up for closure and
- hopefully spread the learnings to avoid the problem from recurring elsewhere.

If you do these things, 8.4 is being met, and possibly also 8.5, 8.5.1, 8.5.2, and 8.5.3.
I believe the model you are describing = documenting and acting on customer feedback, which is a way of enhancing customer satisfaction. Are you saying this is enough to demonstrate the suitability of the QMS with regards to customer satisfaction? Are the follow up for closure activities my evidence that my customers are satisfied? I will start keeping a tally as you suggested. It should prove to be quite interesting. Thank you.

I am not a big fan of the idea of surveying customers either, however, I do feel that Craig Cochran's "Call Report" method is the most likely method to yield any results of substance for a small company like ours. The survey activities are not that time consuming. Are you suggesting, in my specific scenario, that I don't need to survey?
 
#5
Hi,

Please see the note of clause 8.2.1 in AS9100 Rev.C.This can be a solution for smaller companies.

NOTE Monitoring customer perception can include obtaining input from sources such as customer satisfaction surveys, customer data on delivered product quality, user opinion surveys, lost business analysis, compliments, warranty claims and dealer reports.

Good luck
 

Jen Kirley

Quality and Auditing Expert
Staff member
Admin
#6
Re: Determining Customer Satisfaction in a Small Job Shop

I believe the model you are describing = documenting and acting on customer feedback, which is a way of enhancing customer satisfaction. Are you saying this is enough to demonstrate the suitability of the QMS with regards to customer satisfaction? Are the follow up for closure activities my evidence that my customers are satisfied? I will start keeping a tally as you suggested. It should prove to be quite interesting. Thank you.

I am not a big fan of the idea of surveying customers either, however, I do feel that Craig Cochran's "Call Report" method is the most likely method to yield any results of substance for a small company like ours. The survey activities are not that time consuming. Are you suggesting, in my specific scenario, that I don't need to survey?
I think that utilizing my suggestion and Craig Cochran's Call Report should be enough, yes. I think it is important to also gather information on non-complainers, as Joydeb Goswami has advised. My research has shown that more unhappy customers shop elsewhere vs. complain. But you can also learn from happy customers. You can ask your salespeople to gather this information informally:

"Are you getting your product in good condition?"
"Are the deliveries on time - are they convenient for you?"
"Are our customer service personnel Helpful? Knowledgeable? Able to serve your needs the first time?"

Each of these subjects addresses a specific part of the standard. Address these subjects from your learnings and I do believe you can show your QMS health is being represented and improved by this cycle.

I dare say a customer will enjoy being asked questions like these, which are "How way me serve you better" and not just "When is the check going to arrive?"

Do not forget to include your information: data, learnings, actions and resulting suggestions/ideas, in Management Review. When Management can record its understanding of the data, and hopefully allocate resources/take action (which, in extreme cases can even be to "fire" the customer!) you can show auditors a "closed loop" - that is, Plan-Do-Check-Act that reflects not just customer satisfaction but your system's performance.
 
#7
So, You have to find some meaurement method of customer satisfaction, either direct or indirect.

We have to remember that "what we cannot measure cannot improve".Sure every organisation is interested to improve customer satisfaction.

My friend correctly said that dis-satisfied customer don't complaint always,they just swith over.:bigwave:

Finally,I would like to conclude that select the method which is practical for you and meet your objective/s (understanding customer perception about your product).If that is done,you are safe from my colleagues (auditors) and would really be able to put first step for continual improvement.

Good luck
 
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