Customer: a customer is anyone who requires the output(s) of your process.
Requirements: those things that are needed by the customer or supplier in order for them to be satisfied. They may be different to what the customer wants (and the things you are currently not required to provide). It is often helpful to understand the relative priorities of different requirements so you can focus on what makes the most impact. Use a “High – Medium – Low” or “0 – 10” scale to prioritise requirements.
Expectations: customers often have expectations, either about the output or the performance of the process. They may not be expressed explicitly, but are worth knowing as they can significantly affect perceptions of your performance.
Agree who the customers are and their requirements. If you have several customers, you may need to assess their relative importance, particularly if they have differing or conflicting requirements.
You have to discuss and agree requirements with your customer(s). You may also need to have similar discussions with your Supplier(s).
Tools you can use to identify and agree customer (and supplier) requirements…
- Focus Groups
- Customer Requirements Analysis
- Service Level Agreements
- Customer Charters