The Pugh Matrix is widely used by many of the design students in India for concept selection and MOST of them are doing it wrong! Hence this blog post.
The Pugh Matrix is a decision-making tool that uses criteria scoring to determine which of several potential alternatives should be selected. It is named after Scottish scientist Dr. Stuart Pugh, who developed the method for improvement selection called Pugh's Controlled Convergence.
The Pugh Matrix is a standard part of the Six Sigma methodology and is typically used after the development of the Voice of the Customer (VOC) and after the creation of a Quality Function Design (QFD). (This mostly happens in industries, not in academia) The Pugh Matrix may be known by a number of other names, including decision matrix/grid, selection matrix/grid, problem matrix, opportunity analysis, criteria rating form, and criteria-based matrix.
The Pugh Matrix uses specified evaluation criteria to compare alternative improvement opportunities. The steps for creating a Pugh Matrix are as follows:
Define your evaluation criteria. What are the most important and desired characteristics of your solution?
Weight your evaluation criteria as to the relative importance of each.
Define your different improvement alternatives and optional approaches.
Select a "BASELINE" from the alternatives, which will typically be your current state. (THIS STEP IS FORGOTTEN and where the Pugh matrix goes wrong!)
Compare each alternative to the baseline using the evaluation criteria.
Mark the Pugh Matrix using +, -, or S. + means a particular solution scores better on particular criteria as compared to the datum, - means a particular solution doesn't score better on particular criteria as compared to the datum, and S means a particular solution scores the same on a particular criterion as compared to the datum.
Calculate the total score for each alternative.
Select the alternative with the highest score.
Here's a Sample of Pugh's matrix for your understanding:
The Pugh Matrix allows the consultant to organize various criteria (or features) of a solution in a structured way for easy comparison. Using this matrix, a consultant can develop an optimal solution, which is a hybrid of other strong solutions. Furthermore, this matrix facilitates a team-based process for disciplined concept generation here are the steps for creating a Pugh Matrix with an example:
List down the Criteria in a Vertical List. For example, if you are trying to select the best smartphone to buy, your criteria could include battery life, camera quality, screen size, and price.
Select the Datum. For example, if you currently own an iPhone, you could use it as the datum.
List down the Alternative Solutions Horizontally. For example, your alternatives could include a Samsung Galaxy, a Google Pixel, and an LG V60.
Develop weights for each of the requirements. For example, if camera quality is more important to you than screen size, you could give it a higher weight.
Compare each alternative to the datum using the evaluation criteria. For example, you could compare the Samsung Galaxy to the iPhone in terms of battery life, camera quality, screen size, and price.
Mark the Pugh Matrix using +, -, or S. For example, if the Samsung Galaxy has a better battery life than the iPhone, you would mark it with a + in the battery life column.
Calculate the total score for each alternative. For example, you could add up the scores for each alternative in each column.
Select the alternative with the highest score. For example, if the Samsung Galaxy has the highest score, you would select it as the best smartphone to buy.
Hope you got a fair idea of Pugh's Matrix and not WRONG it again!