1990-09-01

Managing the Safety Standards of an Airline During Times of Deregulation 902018

This paper seeks to highlight some of the problems related to deregulation of the airline industry as seen by a major European airline.
While deregulation hit the U.S. industry fast and hard, the European operators could enjoy a more slowly emerging relaxation of the traditional tight government control. Nevertheless, the increased competition encountered on the European arena the last ten years has called for decisive action and revised strategies in order to survive.
On the basis of the U.S. experience and the general trend in Europe particularly, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) set out to reorganize the structure of the company and adopt new strategies for the future. In order to anticipate the different markets emerging, SAS established clear quality priorities. Thereafter the company specified standards and goals for some defined strategic operational areas.
Further, this paper highlights the particular Scandinavian approach with strong focusing on the human individual; recognizing the employee as the most valuable resource of the organization. This in turn requires a new approach to, e.g., recruitment and training, job descriptions, responsibilities, decisions process, internal communication, etc.
It is argued that in the long term it will be the high quality airlines that survive the sharp competition of the deregulated aviation world. Here is the approach chosen by one airline.

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