Professor McPherson discussed in his case study how two different airlines manage passenger booking issues caused by flights delays with the resource they have at hand. In 1985, Professor McPherson became a loyal passenger to a London-based airline due to their exceptional service. This happened when he encountered a problem in making his connecting flight due to weather delays.
The London- Based airline quickly resolved the issue. He spoke to a first class flight attendant who simply made a call to arrange gate transportation, and held the plane until he arrived. The airline’s quick and positive response to Professor McPherson concerns permitted them to gain a loyal passenger for a decade. In the 1980s, real time infrastructure was extremely new or nonexistent in some companies. People were just starting to use computers and there was no internet. Mostly all transaction were completed manually. Professor McPherson believed that with time, new advances in the airline industry would smooth out issues that were caused by flight delays.
However, that was not the case in 1995 when he traveled on an Atlanta- Base airline. He expected the airline systems to be sophisticated enough to alert the airline crew of the connecting passengers facing flight delay issues. However, that was not the case. The technology infrastructure may improved Atlanta-Base airline by giving them access to all the information they need to anticipate any issues. However, they did not have an effective streamline communication process.
The airline had all the information at hand, but the systems in place were not linked. It was probably very difficult to access reliable information. Having a flow of information that helps one do a better job and avoid errors is a great tool . Not only is this a great advantage for employees, but for passengers as well. With this tool in place, passangers will have all the available flight option to help them make informed decisions while traveling. Professor McPherson may have jumped the gun in this case thinking all airlines would have advanced technology infrastructures. There were many companies trying to change their ways and trying to keep up with the technological advancements. Unfortunately, Atlanta – Base airline wasn’t using their technology advancements to the best of their ability.
The importance of having a system in place that interconnect all the information and make it useful for employees to make business decisions would improve workflow and decrease operational costs. If the airlines knows that a flight is delayed they should have a process to notify the airline crew which passenger will need to be rebooked, will need gate transportation, luggage transfers, etc. This would improve the passenger’s experience and increase their loyalty to the airline. Today executives need to focus on how they can achieve a competitive advantage through increasing their use of information technology.
Having a flawless operation and being able to increase profit margins by decreasing cost is key. My suggestion to managers in the airline industry is to continue to develop their infrastructure and to find a technological advantage because eventually information technology will become the back bone of their business. With the right management team they can insure an increase in the effectiveness of internal strategy and competitive strategy. Reading this case it amazes me to see how far along technology has come and to see the impact it made in the airline industry as a whole. The internet is one of the biggest advancements I see. The new systems have enhanced the traveling experience for passengers. In the past,I would have to print a boarding pass, now I can use my phone to check in. Technology has saved companies and their passenger’s time, cost, and trees.
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