The dark side of quality cost analysis
The Quality Cost Analysis will always look at the organisation's costs and not the customer's costs. The manufacturer and the seller are definitely not the only people who will suffer from quality-related costs. The customer suffers from the quality-related costs too. If the manufacturer sells a bad product then the customer will face significant expenses in dealing with the bad product.
Most of the software failures do not lead to deaths. Most of the software projects involve the conscious tradeoffs among many factors which include the cost, the time of completion, the richness of the feature set, and the reliability. There is nothing wrong in doing this type of business tradeoff, consciously and also explicitly, unless the fact is not taken into account that some of the problems which leave in the product may cost the customers much more than the cost to the organisation.
The problem of the cost-of-quality analysis is that it will be set up to underestimate the litigation and the customer dissatisfaction risks. The total cost should include the customer's external failure costs into account (the lawsuits).
The following table compares the external failure costs which will have to be borne by the buyer and the seller:
Table 11. 1: Comparisons of the external failure costs borne by the buyer and the seller
Seller: External failure costs
Customer: Failure costs
These are the types of the costs which have to be absorbed by the seller which releases a defective product.
These are the types of the costs absorbed by the customer who will buy a defective product.