Performance Measurement and Quality Management at Emirates Airline

Introduction

The current competitive global market calls for companies to keep an accurate track of their performance and to enhance the quality of their products and services regularly. For instance, in the Airline industry, numerous companies have emerged, waging stiff competition. Besides, technological advancement has made it possible for the airline companies to offer customized services to their customers (Nataraja & Al-Aali, 2011). To compete effectively in this industry, airline companies have to monitor their performance regularly to establish the areas with bottlenecks and deal with them before they cause devastating effects to the company. Besides, airline companies require having superior quality management strategies. Emirates Airlines is one of the companies that are currently performing well in the industry. The main reasons why the company has managed to overcome competition waged by other airline companies are that it has established strong performance measurement strategies as well as enhanced its quality management strategy (Nataraja & Al-Aali, 2011). This paper aims at looking at the key resources and capabilities that have made Emirates Airlines competitive in the industry. Besides, the paper will look at the company’s performance measurement and quality management strategy.

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Key resources and capabilities

One of the key resources that have made Emirates Airline competitive is financial resources. For decades, the company has effectively managed its financial resources ensuring that it always have enough resources to finance all the emerging operations. For instance, the company has managed to purchase new airplanes to cater for the emerging destinations. Currently, Emirates Airlines is planning to purchase more A380s airplanes to facilitate in serving its established market (Nataraja & Al-Aali, 2011). The airplanes will help it serve the Los Angeles and Dallas destinations effectively. Besides the financial resources, the airline company enjoys a competent human resource. Emirates Airlines has employed competent people. This has helped in enhancing organizational performance. For instance, through the help of its marketing personnel, the company has identified numerous new routes and established its operations there. Today, most of these routes contribute to the high returns enjoyed by the company.

Diversity in the workplace is one of the key resources that enhance organizational growth. Diversity nurtures a strong culture, which facilitate in boosting the competitive advantage of the organization. Emirates Airlines has managed to enhance its competitive advantage by embracing diversity in its workplace (Nataraja & Al-Aali, 2011). The airline’s management encourages sharing of mutual objectives and goals among the employees, therefore, ensuring that all employees pool together their capabilities. As they work as a team, they devote their efforts to addressing the needs of the whole organization. By embracing cultural diversity, Emirates Airlines has managed to bring together the managers and employees and involve them in improving the quality of services and products the airline offers. In return, the company has enhanced customer satisfaction, and it has reduced operations cost. Besides, the company has managed to enhance employee commitment by making them feel as part of the company (Nataraja & Al-Aali, 2011).

Technology is one of the driving forces that enable companies cope with the ongoing globalization. Despite the cost, companies that are embracing technology are performing better compared to those using traditional methods. One of the capabilities that have made Emirates Airline succeed in the airline industry is the company’s ability to come up with novel innovations and to embrace technology (Nataraja & Al-Aali, 2011). For instance, the airline company was the first to install entertainment facilities in its airplanes. Installation of these facilities led to the company increasing its market share and overcoming competition from other airline companies.

One of the strategies that have helped the Emirates Airlines achieve a lasting growth is an investment in the state-of-the-art technology. The company has heavily invested in Danware’s NetOp, which helps it run real time transactions with its numerous branches across the world. Investment in this technology has helped the company enhance its operations. Besides, it has helped in cutting down on the operation costs thus ensuring that the company has enough financial resources to cater for other costs. Besides, Emirates Airlines is capable of harmonizing all its operations through technology. The airline established a virtual office, which helped in running the numerous regional offices. The different offices are able to update their individual operations while at the same time observing a degree of centralized control over the operations. The airline installed Tridion Content Management Solution to enhance the management of its regional offices. The solution helped the company serve clients with diverse languages and cultures, as it is capable of broadcasting same information in different languages across the domains.

Distinctive competencies

Organizational success depends on the ability of the management team to identify the aspects that would generate the desired results. One of the distinctive competencies in the Emirates Airlines is the ability of the management team to analyze the rival companies, identify their weaknesses and strengths, and come up with measures to exploit the weaknesses and counter the strengths (O’Connell, 2011). Besides, the management is capable of analyzing its existing approaches and strategies to determine if they will facilitate in enhancing the company’s competitive advantage. Another distinctive competence in the airline company is the ability to offer services to a wide customer base. Currently, the company has increased the number of its daily flights (O’Connell, 2011). Besides, it has increased the number of its destinations as a way of serving its diverse client base. This has made the company outdo most of the other airline companies and grow its market share.

Potential sources of sustainable competitive advantage

The leadership of Emirates Airlines is the greatest potential source of sustainable competitive advantage. The leaders employ transformative leadership style, which encourages employees to use their experience in coming up with innovations. Empowering employees makes them committed to the organization. The current level of technological advancement in Emirates Airlines can be credited to the leadership style used in the company (O’Connell, 2011). Through empowerment, employees have come up with novel operation strategies. Besides, they have helped the company diversify its operations and come up with a system that helps the leaders centrally manage all the regional branches. This has streamlined operations in the organization, therefore, ensuring that there are no bottlenecks in the services delivery process.

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Another potential source of sustainable competitive advantage in Emirates Airlines is the collaboration between the company and numerous subsidiaries across the globe. Emirates Airlines works with numerous subsidiaries in different countries. In Malta, the company collaborates with ROCKS Group (O’Connell, 2011). The use of local agents in different countries is helping the company address the challenge of customer divergence. Besides, local agents are helping the airline penetrate the market, hence, consolidating its customer base. This continued collaboration with subsidiaries in different countries will help the company enhance its competitive advantage as the local companies will help it identify the needs of individual customers and tailor its services to these needs.

Performance measurement

Emirates Airlines uses numerous parameters to measure its performance. Among the parameters include, finance, environment and service delivery. Financial performance is one of the principal parameters used in measuring the organizational performance in Emirates Airlines. Through financial performance, the company is able to determine if it is treading in the right direction. At the end of every year, the airline prepares the statement of the accounts and compares it with the previous statements to determine if it is performing as expected (O’Connell, 2011). A comparison between the airline’s total revenue and expenditures is conducted, which acts as the indicator of the organizational performance.

Besides financial analysis, the company also uses environmental performance as one of the performance measurement strategies. Global warming has led to the society becoming environmental conscious. Today, many people prefer relating with companies that work towards reducing their level of environment pollution. To ensure that it maintains and expands its customer base, Emirates Airlines works towards coming up with environment friendly services. In Emirates Airlines, every employee has the responsibility to observe environment conservation (O’Connell, 2006). The company measures the amount of carbon dioxide emitted by its various machines and airplanes and works towards reducing the volume of carbon dioxide it emits. Currently, the company is investing on acquiring new airplanes that emit low levels of carbon dioxide. Besides, the company is investing in environment-friendly sources of energy like solar as a way of enhancing its performance.

Besides financial and environment performance, Emirates Airlines uses balanced scorecard method to measure its performance with respect to service delivery. Service deliver is one of the elements that determine organizational performance. It is related to financial performance. An organization that offers poor services reports poor financial records. As a way of measuring its performance, Emirates Airlines uses balanced scorecards to monitor the operations run by various departments as well as their returns (O’Connell, 2011). Through the balanced scorecard, Emirates Airlines is able to determine the perceptions the customers have towards the company. This facilitates in measuring if the company is meeting all the needs of its customers efficiently. Besides, the scorecard helps the company measure its internal performance and identify areas that require improvement. At times, organizations fail to deliver quality services due to internal challenges. For instance, poor communication between various departments may affect service delivery. Hence, through the balanced scorecard, Emirates Airlines identify all the internal challenges affecting the company and works towards overcoming them (O’Connell, 2011). Through measuring financial, environment performance as well as service delivery, Emirates Airlines gets a clear picture of its general performance and work on areas that it finds to be performing poorly.

Quality Management Strategy

Organizational management team uses quality management strategy to enhance the quality of products or services its organization offers. The strategy is based on the assumption that every person that either develops or consumes a product or service has the responsibility of enhancing the quality of the product or service. Emirates Airlines employs a quality management strategy that brings together the management, employees, customers, and suppliers (O’Connell, 2006). The airline management installed a system that helps it monitor operations in all its various regional branches. The main objective of installing the system was to help the company manage all its branches from a central location. In one way, the installation has facilitated in improving the quality of services the airline offers by enhancing efficiency. Besides, the system is capable of broadcasting information in different languages (O’Connell, 2006). Consequently, the company is now capable of meeting all the needs of its diverse customers. Every customer is attended using a language that he or she understands best. Hence, the airline meets all the needs of individual customer.

Emirates Airlines has a department that is dedicated to ensuring that the company acquires the right materials from suppliers. People with vast experience in the aviation industry manage this department. The staff deals with different materials ranging from airplane engines to airframes (O’Connell, 2006). The department ensures that the airline acquires all the required materials on time and liaises with suppliers to procure quality materials. Besides procuring materials for the airline, the department is also responsible for repairing and maintaining all the aircrafts. It ensures that it abides by the established safety and quality procedures. The department helps the company in making sure that its airplanes are always in good condition to serve the increasing number of customers worldwide (O’Connell, 2006).

A person that uses a product or service is at a better position of describing its quality or flaws. Hence, involving customers in a quality management strategy can go a long way in enhancing the success of the strategy. Emirates Airlines works closely with its customers in strengthening its quality management strategy. The company has gone to extent of creating a website where customers post their opinions and complaints (O’Connell, 2006). The website helps the company identify the areas that customers feel that they are not served appropriately. Besides, customers share their opinion on what the company need to do to enhance the quality of its services. By involving customers in its strategy, Emirates Airline streamlines all its operations, therefore, ensuring that all its customers are satisfied.

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Conclusion

Emirates Airlines is one of the leading airlines in the world. Among the factors that make Emirates Airlines one of the leading airlines include its investment in technology, strong leadership, availability of financial resources and competent and committed workforce. To enhance its operations, the company measures its financial performance, and it evaluates its level of service delivery and environmental performance. Moreover, Emirates Airlines uses quality management strategy to enhance the quality of its services. It involves the employees, management team, customers, and suppliers in ensuring that it offers quality to stem competition from other airline companies.

Recommendation

Despite the measures taken by Emirates Airlines to enhance its quality management strategy, the airline is yet to achieve the expected level of quality service delivery. To enhance the quality of its services, the company needs to embark on a service diversification strategy. Currently, the company serves numerous destinations. Besides, its workforce comprises of people with different cultural backgrounds. To achieve service diversification, the company needs to train its workers on the various cultures based on the destinations it serves. By equipping its employees with experience in different cultures, the company will be able to offer customized services to all its customers. One of the reasons why employees are incapable of offering customized services is lack of knowledge about the tastes and preferences of the different cultures. With the appropriate experience, flight attendants and other employees would be able to serve individual customer based on one’s cultural background thus boosting their satisfaction.

Reference List

Nataraja, S., & Al-Aali, A. (2011). The exceptional performance strategies of Emirates Airlines. Competitiveness Review: An International Business Journal Incorporating Journal of Global Competitiveness, 21(5), 471-486.

O’Connell, J. (2006). The Changing dynamics of the Arab Gulf based airlines and an investigation into the strategies that are making Emirates into a global challenger. World Review of International Transport Research, 1(1), 94-114.

O’Connell, J. (2011). The rise of the Arabian Gulf carriers: An insight into the business model of Emirates Airline. Journal of Air Transport Management, 17(6), 339-346.

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