The Kano Model: A Step-By-Step Guide for Doing a Kano Analysis

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Kano Model

Kano Model and Analysis

The Kano Model is a tool for understanding customer satisfaction with products. It was developed by Professor Noriaki Kano in the 1980s. The model has been used extensively in analyzing the quality of many types of goods and services, from cars to computer software to ice cream. In this post, we will discuss what the Kano Model is and how you can use it as part of your business strategy!

The Kano Model is definitely not referred to as often as it should be as its one powerhouse tool to really drill down into customers requirements, customer demands and customer preferences. It might not identify that the customer wants a hotel room, but it will identify all the features and functions customers expect when checking into a hotel room.

A Kano Analysis is a way to understand customer satisfaction with products. Kano developed this analysis in the 1980s and it has been used extensively in analyzing the quality of many types of goods and services, from cars, to computer software, to ice cream. Kano analyzed how customers react and their attitudes towards certain aspects of the product.

Designed by Dr Noriaki Kano in the 1980’s, the Kano Analysis tool has since been adopted across a wide range of sectors and industries to support the design and development of services and products.

The Kano Model is a powerful tool to aid in the product/service design stage and is used to help identify the critical product features and service design features which will drive customer satisfaction. What Dr Nariaki Kano believed was that there were three factors or categories essential to all product/services designs that product teams need to consider.

These factors are made up of Basic, Satisfiers, and Delighter’s.
(basic attributes, performance attributes, excitement attributes)

Kano Model Framework

On the diagram above you can see that on the x-axis shows the level of different functionality and on the y-axis, you can see the level of customer satisfaction. The non-linear shape of the curve is in line with the economic theory which suggests that most people have such non-linear responses.

The idea is that we can use the framework to begin to identify how customers feel about certain features of the product or service.

Kano identified three types of Kano categories:  MUST-HAVES, SATISFIERS and DELIGHTERS

The Kano Model Catagories

MUST-HAVES / BASIC FACTORS

A Must-Have factor is something that a customer simply expects to be there. If it is not present, the customer will be dissatisfied or disgusted. So when looking at customer experiences, it is critical to understand what these elements are.

Otherwise known as Effort/Effortlessness – Kano found that some products required more effort to use than others. Kano also found that if the customer has to make more effort than expected, they feel less satisfied Kano found that some products required more effort to use than others. Kano also found that if the customer has to make more effort than expected, customers will feel less satisfied

SATISFIER FACTORS

These are also called Performance factors. At one extreme, these can disgust if not fully implemented correctly, but they can also delight if implemented correctly Often, the more of these the better.

Also known as “Providing Satisfaction” – This is what Kano called “basics”. Kano analyzed how satisfied customers were with a product that had a certain level of quality, but did not have additional capabilities. Kano called these “basics”. Kano analyzed how satisfied customers were with a product that had a certain level of quality, but did not have additional capabilities.

DELIGHTER FACTORS

These are the “WOW” factors, the excitement factor, something that the customer did not expect.

Performance Satisfaction. Kano called these “delighters”. Kano found that customers often have a high affinity to products that work well and have features beyond their expectations. Kano also found that performance satisfaction improved the customer’s perception of the overall product. Kano called these “delighters”. Kano found that customers often have a high affinity to products that work well and have features beyond their expectations. Kano also found that performance satisfaction improved the customer’s perception of the overall product.

Customer satisfaction is based on whether a feature in a product meets or exceeds expectations.

How to do a Kano Analysis

Step 1. Identify the Kano category

– Kano categorized products into three Kano categories

– Kano called these “delighters” which are features in the products that go beyond expectations

– Kano called these “basics” which are features in the products that are expected with no additional capabilities

– Kano called these “effort/effortlessness” where some products require more effort than usual to use and required more effort on behalf of the customer to achieve their goal

Step 2. Determine how customers feel about the Kano category they’ve identified

– Kano found that customers often have a high affinity to products with delighters or features beyond expectations

– Kano also found that performance satisfaction improved the customer’s perception of the overall product

– Kano found that some products required more effort than others. If they had to make more effort, then they felt less satisfied which Kano called “effort/effortlessness”

Kano Model Example - Hotel Room

The Kano Model and Analysis can be used in many businesses, including marketing, design, and manufacturing Kano is used to try to understand customer satisfaction with features of a product or service.

 

If we go back to the example of a hotel room, we all have clear expectations of services and products we expect to get when checking into a hotel room. We all expect clean sheets, clean towels, a bed which is made, a clean room.

But some also expect an iron and an ironing board, a TV and perhaps even a minibar and perhaps a kettle and coffee making facilities. Some might even expect a Nespresso machine, a flat-screen TV and free Wifi as a bare minimum.

So how would we begin to prioritize the features and understand how important they are for the customer? Well, this is where the Kano Model comes to life.

On the Kano Model, you can see the three categories of Must Have, Performance (Satisfiers) and Delighters. The idea therefore of the Kano Model is to begin to categorize the features customer have requested into one of these three categories.

The Kano factors are not static. They change over time as customer requirements and needs change. Free Wifi in a hotel was once a wow – today it is expected, it is a must-have (for me anyway!). Cruise control in your car was a “wow” once too – now its a Must-Have (for me anyway!).

To learn more about the Kano Model and to see some real examples, check out the video below and perhaps join  our Lean Six Sigma Course

Kano Tool - Video Introduction

Lean Academy

Enrol today and learn more about Lean Thinking

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