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Video Tip: Using Our Five Alaska Airlines Video Case Studies

January 17, 2017
Barry and Jay filming in an Alaska Airlines cockpit

Barry and Jay filming the videos in an Alaska Airlines cockpit

The Wall Street Journal‘s annual scorecard of U.S. airline performance (Jan. 12, 2017), which ranks major carriers on 7 different measures important to travelers, has just been released.  We note that the company we prominently feature in our latest edition, Alaska Airlines, topped the scorecard as the best overall performer for the 4th-straight year, edging out Delta. Alaska also scored 1st in: on-time arrivals, least extreme delays, least 2-hour tarmac delays, and in least number of complaints. It was 3rd in cancelled flights and involuntary bumping, and 4th in mishandled bags.

 The Seattle-based airline says its poor baggage showing in the 2016 scorecard drove a deep study of which flights were causing the most mishandled bags. Alaska began bar-code scanning of every bag going on and off planes. It also figured out which cities, which shifts and which flights had the most problems and found delays with bags transferring from other airlines. So instead of waiting for bags to come through an airport sorting system, Alaska now takes carts to other airlines in Seattle and waits for connecting bags at the tails of arriving airplanes.
Here are the 5 short videos we provide free to adopters:

Quality Counts at Alaska Airlines (Ch.6): “If it is not measured, it is not managed,” says one Alaska exec in this case that provides explicit performance metrics.

Alaska Airlines: 20-Minute Baggage Process–Guaranteed! (Ch.7): Students can flowchart the process a bag follows from kiosk to destination carousel after watching this video.

The People Focus: Human Resources at Alaska Airlines (Ch.10): The employee “Empowerment Toolkit” reminds us of Ritz Carlton’s famous customer service philosophy.

Lean Operations at Alaska Airlines (Ch.16): The company’s aggressive implementation of Lean includes its 6-sigma Green Belt training, Kaizen events, Gemba Walks, and 5S applications.

Scheduling Challenges at Alaska Airlines (Module B and Ch.15): Good scheduling of crews and planes means optimization–the perfect fit for our coverage of LP and scheduling.

OM is indeed a centerpiece of Alaska’s success and we think your students will enjoy these videos.

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