In this article we shall discuss in detail Design for X or DfX. In Design for X (DfX), the “X” symbolizes “Excellence“. So, it is Design for Excellence.
But Excellence in what ? It is Excellence in something. That something can be any of the several aspects such as cost, quality, usability, manufacturing, safety etc.
Suppose you want to design a product that is very cost effective, then you incorporate various guidelines to optimize the cost of the product in the design of the product itself. This is called Design for Cost.
The guidelines may differ if you want your product to excel in some other aspect. Suppose you are doing Design for Safety, What is Design for Safety ?? It is as set of technical guidelines that are made part of the product development, to make sure that the risks to safety and health are significantly reduced during the product development/construction, and during the subsequent use and maintenance of the final product.
Thus, Design for X or Excellence (DFX) is a systematic approach for designing a product where X represents the objectives or characteristics of a product or process.
As per PMBOK 6th edtion, “Design for X (DfX) is a set of technical guidelines that may be applied during the design of a product for the optimization of a specific aspect of design.“
PMBOK mentions Design for X (DfX) as one of the techniques used in the “Manage Quality” Process, which translates the Quality Management Plan into executable quality activities that incorporate the Organization’s quality policies into the project.
It is obvious, that the concept of DfX is largely used in Product development and engineering. In product development, the design of a product can be driven by several different aspects, however, with focus on one single aspect we can have better control, and we can also simplify the overall product development process.
Usage of DfX may result in cost reduction, improvement in quality, better performance, and customer satisfaction.