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Lean Auditing: Driving Added Value and Efficiency in Internal Audit by James C. Paterson

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3 Key Lean Tools & Techniques

This chapter outlines the lean tools and techniques I have found to be most useful in an internal audit context. This list is small compared to the full range of lean tools and techniques, but – at this stage – I would rather give a flavour of what there is, rather than swamp the reader (since a full description of these tools could comfortably fill several books).

UNDERSTANDING CUSTOMER NEEDS: THE KANO MODEL

The Kano model (created by Dr Noiaki Kano) is one of the most powerful lean tools for thinking about what customers do and do not value. It involves listening to the “Voice of the Customer” in relation to what is valued and mapping this out for ongoing reference. Of particular interest is the insight that there are different types of value related attributes. The three key types are summarized below:

  • Basic requirements or dissatisfiers: This is an attribute or requirement a customer expects as part of a service or product and if it is not present the customer will be dissatisfied or unhappy (e.g. clean sheets in a hotel room, or food in a supermarket that is not mouldy). However, if the attribute is present it will not necessarily result in anything more than a neutral feeling. Although these attributes are basic, this does not mean they will be easy to achieve;
  • Performance factors or satisfiers: These are requirements or attributes where the customer value perception will vary depending on the extent to which it is present: for example, ...

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