Three Dimensions of Quality

You can read much more about the dimensions and quality aspects in ‘Changing Times: Quality for Humans in a Digital Age‘.


“I don’t know how much thought passed before he arrived at this, but eventually he saw that Quality couldn’t be independently related with either the subject or the object but could be found only in the relationship of the two with each other.”

Robert M. Pirsig, from Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

The ‘Three Dimensions of Quality’ model encourages thinking about quality from a human perspective, focusing on customers and their relationship with products. What are the dimensions and aspects which could affect this relationship?

The customer perception at the centre of the model is influenced by the three dimensions; three Ds which can be important factors in many relationships, including those between a person and a product:

  • DESIRABLE: The extent to which our needs and wishes are fulfilled. Are we getting what we want? Is our experience a positive one?
  • DEPENDABLE: The extent to which we trust and feel that we can rely on a product. Do we feel safe and protected? Is it there when we need it?
  • DURABLE: The extent to which a product’s value to us endures. If the product changes, or our needs and desires change; do they still align?

Each of the dimensions is also the nucleus of a collection of quality aspects; some of the many factors which can influence a person’s impression of a product:

Quality Aspects influencing how Desirable a product might be


Quality Aspects influencing how Dependable a product might be


Quality Aspects influencing how Durable the relationship with a product might be



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