Using Qualitative Data to Learn About Customer Needs: Understanding Employer Desires When Designing an MBA Program

Quality Management Journal vol. 15 issue 2 - April 2008

Abstract: [This abstract is based on the authors' abstract.] It is demonstrated that qualitative data, when combined with quantitative data, may be used to understand customer requirements. The study focuses on how a business school determined the needs and wants of their customers, the employers of their MBA graduates, as part of an effort to redesign the school’s MBA program. The inquiry was guided by the “voices to choices” approach to collect qualitative data and was supplemented by quantitative data collected through surveys. An example shows how this information was translated into actionable goals and the steps taken to improve the MBA program.

Keywords: Data collection - Data analysis - Customer requirements - Voice of the customer (VOC) - Customer expectation

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