OISM Tutorial

Topics: Luggage, British Airways, London Heathrow Airport Pages: 5 (1518 words) Published: March 1, 2014


The following materials are reports based on the opening of Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 5 (T5).

Please review the material and answer the following questions:

1.Identify the main causes of the service failure of T5.
2.From your knowledge of capacity planning and control, what improvements can you suggest for British Airways/Heathrow management in addressing future like developments?

Preplanning and Preparation Prevents Poor Performance

Article 1

T5 was 'national embarrassment'
The chaotic opening of Heathrow Airport's Terminal 5 showed "serious failings" by British Airways and airport operator BAA, MPs have said. The event in March was a source of "national embarrassment", the House of Commons Transport Committee said. It said the problems, which included cancelled flights and thousands of bags going missing, "could and should" have been avoided with better planning. The companies have apologised and said the situation had improved since then. 'Long queues'

Committee chairwoman Louise Ellman MP, said: "What should have been an occasion of national pride was in fact an occasion of national embarrassment." When the £4.3bn terminal opened on 27 March, most of the problems were down to "insufficient communication" between British Airways (BA) and BAA, the report found. It also criticised poor staff-training and system-testing by the airline company. The 36,584 passengers who turned up on the first day faced long queues and had little idea about what was happening. "When the baggage system failed, luggage piled up to such an extent that it was transported by road to be sorted off-site. "According to BA, 23,205 bags required manual sorting before being returned to their owners," the report said. Story from BBC NEWS:


Published: 2008/11/03 00:09:35 GMT

Article 2
What went wrong at Heathrow's T5?

Hundreds of passengers were stranded overnight
Dozens of flights in and out of Heathrow Airport's brand new £4.3bn Terminal 5 have been cancelled and staff are dealing with a backlog of 15,000 bags. But what caused the baggage-handling system to break down on that fateful first day?

Despite months of preparations at T5, its problems began almost immediately as staff arrived for their morning shifts. Many British Airways airport workers complained they were delayed getting to the building because of a shortage of specially-designated car parking spaces. Some also reported that staff overflow car parks were not open and they had been forced to drive around in circles to find somewhere to put their cars. Then, once inside the terminal building, workers also faced problems getting to the restricted "airside" via security checkpoints.

Jamie Bowden, an aviation analyst and former BA customer services manager, was at T5 during the early hours on launch day and said he began to have concerns when he saw queues of staff. European and short-haul flights operated on a tight schedule, he said, and staff needed to "hit the ground running" to ensure everything ran on time.

"I thought 'Woah! There are a lot of people not getting to their areas in time'. If I had seen this in Terminal 1 it would have immediately signalled danger to me. "If you start the day like that you are playing catch-up all day long."

'Staff confusion'
As well as being delayed getting through security, many staff were also unfamiliar with the building and systems they were using. Ed Blissett, from the GMB union, reported how workers had not been familiarised with the new terminal and that many "didn't know where to go, what bags to get". They [staff] were in a position where they were unaware of what tasks they had been given Jamie Bowden Aviation analyst

One baggage handler told the BBC it was "a shambles the moment the doors opened" and blamed BA for the "lack of training and...
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