What is the Voice of the Customer (Translation Matrix)?

Learn about the Voice of the Customer and how to use the VOC Translation Matrix tool in Kure

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Written by Bill
Updated over a week ago

Voice of the Customer (VOC) describes the customer’s feedback about their experiences and expectations for your product or services.

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VOC is vital to helping organizations focus improvement efforts. With VOC, organizations can measure how well it meets customer requirements and prioritize where to focus improvements.

VOC is essential for all projects, even if you’re not directly focusing on customer issues. If you’re focusing on specific customer issues, you need to understand them thoroughly from the customer’s perspective.

While your project may or may not directly target an external customer issue, understanding the Voice of the Customer is vital in any project. Even if your project deals entirely with an internal customer issue, you should keep external customer issues in mind, so you don’t inadvertently disadvantage external customers while making improvements.

Suppose you’re focusing on an inward-facing project, such as waste reduction. In that case, you need to understand VOC, so you don’t unintentionally disadvantage the customer as you make improvements.

What is the VOC Translation Matrix?

The VOC Translation Matrix helps the team turn general comments into measurable requirements.

To clarify your project’s focus, you’ll identify who receives the results from the process you intend to improve. Then, you’ll determine what’s important to the customer.

In other words, what do they value? What the customer cares about are general categories of requirements?

How do I use the Voice of the Customer Translation Matrix?

Customer Comment

The customer comment is what the customer would say if asked. When possible, use verbatim customer comments (or summaries) in this section. Often the customer is quite vague in describing their issue, so it becomes crucial for you to dig deeper to understand it better. Also, keep in mind that the customer may use words that mean something different within your organization.

Identify the Issue

This identification is made by understanding what the customer truly means by their statement and choosing the closest term (Timeliness, Ease of Use, Accuracy, Reliability, Cost, Choice) from the drop-down menu in the cells of that column. If none of these fit the situation exactly, choose the closest one, but try to write the Customer Requirement to address the intent.

Customer Requirement

You can use this measure to judge how well you meet customer expectations. Unfortunately, sometimes we can’t determine a practical measure, but take your best shot.

For purposes of your project, you may not need a precise measurement—as long as you aren’t adversely affecting a customer issue. However, if you’re seeking to improve a customer issue, you’ll want to find some objective way to measure, so you can confirm that you’ve made a real difference.

​​Kure guides you through each step in creating your VOC Translation Matrix by asking simple questions and providing guidance along the way. Powered by our Process Optimization Path® (artificial intelligence), Kure will help you and your teams collaborate to complete process improvement projects together.

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