Frequently Asked Questions
What is J.D. Power and J.D. Power Asia-Pacific?
J.D. Power, a business unit of McGraw Hill Financial, is well known for our global marketing information based on independent consumer surveys of product and service quality, customer satisfaction, and buyer behavior. Each year, we interact with millions of consumers to better understand their opinions, perceptions, and expectations about a variety of products and services in more than a dozen industries.
Our services include customer satisfaction research, market research, and performance improvement programs.
Established in 1968 and headquartered in Westlake Village, California, J.D. Power has three U.S. offices and nine international locations serving Canada, Europe, and the Asia Pacific region. On April 1, 2005, J.D. Power and Associates became a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies, which changed its name to McGraw Hill Financial in 2013.
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What is JDPower.com?
J.D. "Dave" Power III, founder of J.D. Power, wanted to give something back to the consumers who completed the company's independent surveys. JDPower.com's free product and service ratings represent Dave's heartfelt "thank you" to the hundreds of thousands of people who responded to surveys about products and services in a variety of industries.
J.D. Power translates consumer survey responses into studies and reports that are used by companies worldwide to improve product quality, customer satisfaction, and other business metrics. JDPower.com features top-level highlights of these benchmarking studies using a Power Circle Ratings system, which conveys consumer perceptions of product quality and customer satisfaction.
What are Power Circle Ratings?
Power Circle Ratings* (the Ratings) are an easy-to-use system developed by J.D. Power for JDPower.com. All Ratings are based on the opinions of consumers who have actually used or owned the product or service being rated. Since the Ratings are based on J.D. Power research studies that survey a representative sample of owners, they are indicative of what typical buyers may experience.
High ratings for a particular product/service/company do not necessarily mean that every customer will have a positive experience. It simply indicates that, on average, consumer perceptions of the product/service/company indicate that it stands out when compared with competitive products/services/companies.
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*Please note that Power Circle Ratings may not include all information used to determine J.D. Power awards.
What makes JDPower.com Power Circle Ratings different?
Power Circle Ratings are one of the only sources of consumer ratings based on independent and unbiased feedback from a representative sample of verified product and service owners. Representative means that the study results represent the general population of buyers/owners of that particular product or service, and verified means that the respondent actually owns, has owned, or used the product or service being rated.
Although many Web sites provide consumer ratings and feedback, in most cases product or service ownership is not verified. Verification of ownership is important because ratings on other sites may be based on information collected from online surveys, discussion forums, or chat rooms. In many cases, this type of consumer feedback lacks sufficient rigor. In some instances, a respondent is providing feedback on a product or service that they do not own.
How are interviews of syndicated studies conducted?
In America, J.D. Power collects vehicle owner feedback by mailing questionnaires to vehicle owners who will then fill them in, for vehicle owner information is open and consumers are in great cooperation and integrity in America, while in China, J.D. Power collects data by adopting the relatively most appropriate method of intercepting consumers and interviewing them face to face through appointment as for now in order to find eligible vehicle owners for interviews, and not affected by other factors and guarantee randomness and representativeness of samples, for detailed and complete vehicle owner information cannot be obtained from official channels in China.
Of course, J.D. Power also tries other data collection methods like online survey, and currently, has adopted this method to conduct New Vehicle Intender Study (NVIS) and BrandWebsite Evaluation Study (MWES) in China. Other syndicated studies may also adopt more advanced and effective interview methods when time is right.
Can syndicated studies represent performance of the entire industry nationwide? How to determine cities and vehicle models?
J.D. Power has established rigorous comprehensive-quota sampling rules considering various factors including brand, vehicle model, sales volume, regional distribution and demographic composition comprehensively to realize syndicated studies’ representativeness of the entire industry.
J.D. Power’s main syndicated studies cover cities with relatively big sales nationwide, whose sales contribute about 50% of national sales. For instance, 2013 SSI covered 46 main cities distributing in northern, southern, western and eastern regions and tier-1, tier-2, tier-3 and tier-4 cities. Meanwhile, J.D. Power has been expanding city coverage at an average rate of 3 to 4 newly-added research cities every year in recent years.
J.D. Power’s main syndicated studies cover nearly all mainstream models priced at slightly more than 20,000 RMB to millions in Chinese market. The market sales of those vehicle models take up 90% of sales of all vehicle models. Only vehicle models with certain sales can be listed in syndicated studies to collect enough samples. With 2013 SSI taken for instance, monthly sales of each vehicle model should exceed 2,000 units.
J.D. Power’s main syndicated studies cover vehicle owners aging 19 to 68 with various education, work and income backgrounds.
Are questionnaires of syndicated studies for China in accordance with those for America? Why are they or not in accordance?
CSI/ SSI：Questionnaires are comprised of two parts no matter for China or America: One part is performance evaluation reflected by 10-point scale scoring questions of the overall performance, factors and attributes, with the function of evaluating performance satisfaction; and the other part is diagnostics which helps find weak section and provide improvement suggestions. Questionnaires for China and America are generally accordant in performance evaluation, for consumer demands of services are basically the same no matter in America or China, while those for China use more and more detailed questions in diagnostics, for Chinese auto market developed quite late, which lags far behind American market in both market maturity and understanding of service demands and expectations of consumers. Therefore, more diagnostic questions will help us understand customer demands and expectations in Chinese market more precisely, hence helping main OEMs provide more accurate and quality services. Additionally, competition is more concentrated and direct because of ultrafast development of Chinese market, which, instead, results in richer operation details emerging in some service sections and industries than those of other markets. Therefore, special consideration is also needed.
IQS/ APEAL/ VDS: Questionnaires for China and America are exactly accordant.
BWES/ NV-TSI: Quite new studies to China. Performance evaluation questions of questionnaires for China also exactly accord with those for America, with just slight revisions of diagnostic questions for Chinese market.
DAS/ NVIS/ SLS: Syndicated studies unique to Chinese market.
How are index scores in syndicated studies calculated?
There are two types of indexes in syndicated studies as follows:
- One is satisfaction index, the result obtained by weighing and totaling scores of one brand’s product or service given by consumers. The overall satisfaction index is comprised of factors and attributes. Factors are different elements of customer experience, and attributes are specific elements consisting of each factor and measuring satisfaction in specific filed. The total index score is obtained by adding up factor scores calculated by attribute scores and factor/attribute weights.
Satisfaction index is applied in SSI/ CSI/ APEAL/ DAS/ SLS/ MWES, etc..
- The other is PP100 (the problem number of every 100 vehicles), the result obtained by totaling problems experienced by consumers, and one main indicator of durable goods quality for us.
PP100 also categorizes problems, whose categories are similar to factors of satisfaction index, and is equal to the total of problem numbers in each category.
PP100 index is applied in IQS/VDS.
How to guarantee data collection quality?
Cooperation with top interview companies: Long-term cooperation with the most world-famous market research companies (including Nielsen, Gallop, TNS, etc.) to establish a series of market research execution standards and indicators solely proprietary to J.D. Power. Additionally, every interview company responsible for specific execution has a set of thorough and effective internal quality control systems to guarantee interview quality and stability from the source. The powerful combination guarantees data collection quality of J.D. Power syndicated studies.
Rigorous third-party review: J.D. Power commissions independent international third-party companies to review authenticity and accuracy of data fed back by interview execution companies. Review rates are 33% of tape recording and 33% of callback.
J.D. Power review center and unannounced inspection: J.D. Power has been investing more in data collection quality control departments in recent years, and established J.D. Power review center in early 2013 to supervise interview agencies, interviewers and respondents specially. Meanwhile, J.D. Power also hired full-time reviewers to conduct unannounced inspections in all surveyed cities to further strengthen direct monitoring of data collection quality.
Dynamic agency supervision mechanism: J.D. Power syndicated studies except Dealer Attitude Study (DAS) do not need and absolutely do not allow data collection agencies to contact dealers directly. Therefore, J.D. Power established a special supervision hotline for complaining about related problems which will be dealt with seriously once verified to guarantee standard operation of J.D. Power’s data collection agencies.
How do companies receive approval to use J.D. Power awards?
J.D. Power has strict guidelines for advertising claims, and every advertising claim related to a study is reviewed prior to publication to ensure accuracy. Only highest-ranked performers in pre-defined categories are allowed to license the use of J.D. Power awards in advertising.
Results are based on measures of customer satisfaction and quality by consumers that are proprietary to J.D. Power. Awards and performance ranking are based on numerical scores, and not necessarily on statistical significance. Our experience indicates that even when small differences occur in the scores of those being measured, these small perceived differences help drive competition in the marketplace, thereby improving product and service quality and driving increases in overall customer satisfaction.
How can J.D. Power information be unbiased when manufacturers pay for the studies?
J.D. Power industry benchmarking studies generally are not funded by the companies that are measured. Our syndicated studies are funded and owned by the company and based on the aggregated responses of consumer perceptions of product quality and customer satisfaction--not the opinions of J.D. Power. After the study results are published, manufacturers, retailers, suppliers, and other industry participants can choose whether or not to purchase the study. Ownership of study data is key to the company's independence and unbiased position. This third-party perspective enables us to provide clients and consumers with credible and clear feedback. Although J.D. Power does conduct custom research for many clients to help drive quality and customer satisfaction improvement, results of this type of proprietary research are owned by the clients that commission the research and the results are not made available to the public