Southwest Airlines Essay

1639 words - 7 pages

Southwest AirlinesWhat are some of the ways in which Southwest is different than other commercial airlines?Question (1)There were many elements that contributed to Southwest Airlines' success in an industry where Southwest Airlines was successful for more than twenty consecutive years. These elements included, service, operations, cost control, marketing, and the corporate culture. All of these elements combined contributed to the success of Southwest Airlines.Southwest made flying fun for employees and customers by making everyone feel like they were part of one big family. Management encouraged good relations between employees and passengers that resulted in high employee job satisfaction ...view middle of the document...

Southwest Airlines' target was to offer airline services to different demographic areas and Southwest positioned itself from the competition by providing excellent customer service at a lower cost. Customers viewed this concept as convenient and affordable since passengers flew nonstop to their destinations at no-hassle airports. Additional factors from the Heskett article used by Southwest Airlines were the Operating Strategy, Strategy Systems Integrations and Service Delivery System elements. Southwest used a combination of operations, marketing, technology, its employees, quality and cost control in order to provide a quality of service. The coordination of operating strategy and service delivery provided high quality and productivity at a low cost. Employee satisfaction increased significantly and it became difficult for other airlines to compete with Southwest Airlines.*Which of the new routes would your recommend, Detroit-Phoenix, or new service to Dayton or Baltimore? Why?odiscuss economics, how it fits into Southwest's growth strategy, how will Herb react?Question (2)Baltimore-Chicago- Based on the numbers shown in Exhibit #1, the Baltimore-Chicago route has the possibility to be very profitable for Southwest. There are two big obstacles that may be hard for Southwest to overcome. The first is finding employees that fit the "typical" Southwest mold. Southwest travelers have come to expect high levels of customer service from Southwest employees, and if Southwest can't meet customer expectations in the Baltimore market the chance of the new route being a success might be slim. The second issue would be the amount of delays that may occur in the Baltimore area because of weather. Southwest has built a reputation of being on-time for arrivals/departures along with quick turn times. The North East often has strong storms, especially in the winter that may affect turn times (possible de-icing) or even worse, lead to the cancellation of flights.Dayton-Chicago- Establishing Southwest service from Dayton to Chicago wouldn't be Southwest's first choice based entirely on the financial outlook for the new route. Initially I thought this would be the best choice for Southwest because of Dayton's proximity to Chicago. It would be easy for Southwest to move employees into positions in the Dayton area cutting down on hiring and training costs, but it looks like the average fares in the market are already fairly priced. If Southwest tried to enter the market they wouldn't be able to bring their fares down low enough to steal business from their competitors and still make a profit.Detroit-Phoenix- Creating a new route from Detroit to Phoenix would work well for Southwest. Southwest already has a presence in both markets. By having this presence they would already have employees in place to help out with the new route avoiding the large expense of hiring and training a brand new ground crew. Their brand awareness in these two markets is already...

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