Improving Customer Satisfaction
Compliance Code of Conduct (Customer Satisfaction)
At Yamaha, we do our utmost to develop, manufacture, and sell the type of leading products that delight and satisfy our customers.
Aiming for Products that Satisfy Customers
The Yamaha Group has created a Quality Assurance Officers Committee that consists of staff responsible for quality management in our operating and sales departments. We have set up the CS Subcommittee which forms a part of several subordinate Quality Enhancement Subcommittees.
The CS Subcommittee promotes research with a main emphasis on creating planning and design systems that realize products that satisfy customers.
At present, efforts are being made to plan and design products in accord with the concept of considering every person from every angle, which is based on the idea of universal design. Following on from Yamaha Corporation AV Products Division, several business divisions introduced a system to efficiently analyze customer opinion using text mining*1 techniques at the end of fiscal 2011. We are promoting the creation of a system that links this text mining method with product development.
- *1 A method for analyzing text data by analyzing regular text and extracting useful information
Aiming to Realize a Truly Customer-Oriented Stance
The Yamaha Group declares a customer-oriented approach in its corporate philosophy. A card explaining the need to implement this approach in the course of daily activities is distributed to every employee.
Yamaha Corporation AV Products Division
“Embrace customer feedback; look at the world from their eyes” (AV Products Division slogan)
To develop the kind of products and services that exceed customer expectations, the AV Products Division actively gathers and collects customer feedback. By listening to customer's voices as closely as possible, the division continues to look for the way to satisfy each and every customer in every business setting.
For example, in the product planning stages, the division creates a planning sheet in which they input details such as projected customer profile, the value provided to the customer, customer feedback/ improvements from existing products, and other factors approached from the customer's point of view. This information is shared with every person who is involved in the creation of the end product. The division sends out customer satisfaction surveys to customers in Japan, the United States, and Europe immediately after purchase. In a CS evaluation meeting, the division uses the results of these surveys as feedback for current and future product development. Of particular importance are customer assessments and opinions related to sound quality, looks (design), ease of use, innovation (function), and reliability. These factors relate to major quality policies within the Yamaha Group. From this perspective, the division focuses on the differences between pre-purchase customer expectations and post-purchase satisfaction. They use text mining*1 techniques on free-form customer feedback to perform trend analysis, combining quantitative and qualitative data to uncover areas of potential improvement that can lead to greater customer satisfaction.
The results of these surveys (please refer to figure 1 for certain examples of analysis results) are published to all divisions, and used as guides to help reach goals defined in our quality policies. We believe that the daily inquiries and opinions coming into our customer help desks provide a wealth of clues leading to future improvements. We analyze and utilize this feedback in the same manner as the customer surveys.
In other ways, too, the division continues activities that tie to product creation and manufacturing from the customer's point of view. The division publishes a monthly CS News newsletter (see Figure 2) delivered to departments, relevant sales companies, and factories. This newsletter is filled with information about customer preferences and trends. The division also creates a daily “Customer Feedback of the Day” (see Figure 3), which is sent to all business locations. The update communicates product-related opinions and impressions from customers in the division's main markets.
Through usability assessments, the division is able to improve product ease of use and product manual readability.
By utilizing customer feedback stemming from various business scenarios, the division moves closer to offering products and services that exceed the expectations of our customers.
Figure 1 Customer feedback analysis for one product model
(1)(2) Analyze customer feedback (map most frequent comments)
(3)Chart expectations and satisfaction levels
(4)CS assessment analysis (analyze important factors to improve customer satisfaction)
Figure 2 CS News (English version for overseas distribution; Japanese version for Japanese locations)
Figure 3 Customer Feedback of the Day
The Yamaha Group always focuses on product development from the customer's point of view. As part of these efforts, we conduct usability tests*2 with the aim of improving the user-friendliness of our products and making manuals easier to understand. Results are reflected in our product specifications and manuals.
The development and other departments involved in products and services coordinate usability tests and swiftly share information about problem areas. This makes it possible to quickly take the steps necessary for improving the usability of existing products and uncovering operability issues with new products in development.
- *2 Usability test: Having likely customers actually use a product to determine the product's ease of use (usability). Yamaha uses employees as volunteer testers.
Yamaha Corporation Digital Musical Instruments Division
The Digital Musical Instruments Division conceptualizes and designs digital pianos, other keyboard instruments, digital drums and other instruments as well as related services. Products that incorporate electrical/computerized control systems feature a variety of functions not available in traditional acoustic instruments, and it is important that the customer can easily operate these functions.
[Examples of Initiatives to Enhance Usability]
(1)Example of implementing usability test
- Usability assessment for the CVP versatile digital piano
- Usability assessment for the IDC function (connects the instrument directly to the Internet to stream a song or display musical notes simultaneously) of the CVP digital piano
- Workability assessment for digital drum assembly
- Visual discrimination assessment for LED and operating display colors
(2)Design based on operability
- Employed LED colors and screen display colors that are easier to see for people with weak color vision for the Tyros4 multifunction keyboard
- Considered screen display colors and added a function that allows users to adjust screen colors on their own using a PC for the MOTIF XF synthesizer
(3)Improved ease-of-use of manuals
- Employed easy-to-see colors in product manuals for people with weak color vision (Digital manual for the CP5/CP50 stage piano has been certified by Color Universal Design Organization (CUDO)*3)
- Yamaha Manual Library includes easy to handle text versions of manuals to enable the use of screen reader software
- Assessed the search feature and operating workload of the manual in document format for the 01V96i mixer in order to improve ease of reading and use (assessed by an outside organization commissioned by the Digital Musical Instruments Division and PA Division)
- *3 non-profit organization that engages in educational activities aimed at raising awareness toward color universal design