Comair Crew Scheduling

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Introduction
Comair was established by Raymond and David Mueller in 1977, Cincinnati. Through the efforts of the Muellers, Comair was successfully launched and expanded in the airline industry. This is reflected in the company’s time line since 1977 to 2009. Comair is a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Air Lines since 1984 and has its main hub at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.

Information Technology/Information Systems (IT/IS) Strategy
According to James Quinn (1991), strategy is the pattern or plan that integrates an organisation’s major goals, policies and actions into a cohesive whole. A well formulated strategy helps to organise resources into a unique and viable force based on the competences and shortcomings of the organisation, on anticipated changes in the environment and activities by competitors. It is important that the strategy be Clear, Accurate, Timely, Relevant, Reliable, Concise, Complete and Current. Therefore, an IT/IS Strategy for Comair will encompass all of the above in order to be effective. A comparison of the IT/IS and Business Strategy will be executed.

Strategic Analysis
Strategic analysis involves an examination of an organisation’s objectives and its relations with its environment and its resources. The results can help management make informed business decisions in achieving the company’s objectives. Some of the tools which can be used are Porter and Millar’s Five Force Model, Porter’s Competitive Strategies, Nolan’s Stage Model, McFarlan’s Strategic Grid, Value Chain Analysis, Critical Success Factors Analysis (CSFs) and SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) Analysis. These tools are just a small portion of all those available. Each tool when examined can help derive an IT/IS strategy which is an integral part of an organisation’s business strategy. The SWOT and Porter’s Five Force Models will be used to strategically analyse Comair’s business operations.

SWOT Analysis: Comair


PORTER’S MODEL

New Market Entrants
Since the information systems software is proving to be defective at Comair i.e. causing flights to be cancelled and delayed, it has opened up the market for new comers in the industry. There are hardly any barriers to entry. Once a potential entrant can satisfy the financial requirements to enter the industry, there is little that can be done by Comair to restrict them. New entrants will severely increase competition for Comair; eating away into its profitability. If Comair can heed the recommendations to be suggested, then the organisation will stand a fighting chance to remain competitive and viable. Substitute Products

There are various forms of travel available in the market such as sea, land, and rail. The method of transportation selected depends on the needs of the consumer. All forms of travel have its advantages and disadvantages. Air travel is most popular because of the convenience and time saving nature. However, this form of travel is most costly. Comair’s current performance is unsatisfactory which may result in customers choosing the other forms of transportation or simply taking their business to another airline company. The new IT/IS Strategy will improve flight operations and eventually reclaim its market share as well as expand its customer base. Competitors

The hiccups with the Legacy system caused the public image of Comair to be tarnished. Customers were no longer satisfied with Comair’s operations which left them with the option of seeking alternative flight plans. Confidence in the airline was lost. Now competitors can take advantage of the situation and increase their market share. This will contribute to Comair losing its competitive advantage. It is the aim of all businesses to maintain a competitive edge. The...
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