Case Study: Industrial Fuse Manufacturer Uses Voice of Customer to Assess the Need for Monitoring System


  • There is no current competing technology and the potential benefits are large.
  • An intensive marketing and education program would be essential to the success of the new technology.
  • Assuming successful product performance, the market opportunity is large, but it will take many years to penetrate.


The study indicated:

  • Fuses are critical for the protection of manufacturing equipment across all segments and that plant downtime can be very costly
  • Locating and replacing blown fuses was extremely important in reducing plant downtime
  • Few locations monitored fuses with a network or control monitoring system
  • Significant education would be required to successfully launch a wireless fuse monitoring system in these markets due to the perception of poor reliability of wireless systems, perception of high costs, and perceived lack of need (fear of change)

Business Challenge

Early on in the stage gate process, a leading manufacturer of industrial fuses required Voice of Customer (VOC) data related to a wireless fuse monitoring system. While blown fuses are the cause of significant periods of downtime and lost production, there was no clear approach to monitoring fuses in manufacturing operations.

The VOC research would be used to assess the frequency and impact of fuse-related outages and the respondent’s interest in a wireless fuse monitoring system.

Research Objective

To assist the client in understanding:

  • Interest level of manufacturing facilities for a wireless fuse monitoring system
  • Appropriate value/price ranges
  • Potential sales barriers for this proposed system



Telephone interviews within the Petro-Chemical, Automotive, and Steel/Aluminum markets were proposed.

More than 150 interviews with engineering and maintenance personnel were conducted over a four-week period. The primary market segments interviewed included:

  • Petro-Chemical
  • Automotive
  • Steel/Aluminum