Pillow Menu II: Using Kano to reduce costs AND improve customer satisfaction

We stayed at a La Quinta Inn over the Easter Holidays while visiting family. I’m always on the lookout for practical examples of process improvement tools being used and found one during our recent trip. This applied use of Kano is important to note.

As you know, “satisfiers” are programs or activities that increase customer satisfaction. The more you add the better, but and this is an important consideration, you need to know if these programs are really valued by your customers and what they cost. Adding programs that customers don’t value really only adds costs.

We found the card below on our bed when we arrived.

Reducing Costs via Environmental Appeal
Reducing Costs via Environmental Appeal

The appeal is to pitch in, be envoronmentally aware and “do your part.” If you participate, the hotel, La Quinta Inn in this case is able to skip two days of cleaning the bed linens. This is a major expense in time and cash outlay to clean the linens every day. Now the bed is made every day, so the basic requirement is being met, BUT if you participate you (the customer) participates with the hotel in perserving the environment, with little loss in comfort and the hotel saves money.

In using the Kano tool, it is important to bring it this this kind of level and measure the costs saved and the number of customers who participate. If you have 200 rooms in your hotel with an average occupany rate of 50%/month and only 20% of your customers participate, this is still 20 rooms times 2 days of the linen cost saved. This adds up with no loss in customer satisfaction and probably the customers who participate will indentify more strongly with your hotel.

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