When Ibrahim Abdulla Al Hamer was appointed as Gulf Air’s Chief Executive at the beginning of 2001, he initiated a number of top-level changes, one of which was to implement a more open approach to management issues.
These included increasing the accessibility of management for the benefit of customers and company staff, and ensuring more transparency throughout the airline’s operations.
Gulf Air also adopted a new corporate philosophy in early 2001 under the slogan ‘Winning Together’, and as a result, a ‘Management Change Group’is now studying every aspect of the airline’s internal operations, with the aim of increasing efficiency and improving the dynamics of the company.
Gulf Air is already reaping some of the benefits of these changes. Mr. Al Hamer says he is particularly pleased with the progress towards improving Gulf Air’s flight punctuality record.
“By improving communications with passengers, ensuring people check-in on time and don’t stray between check-in and the Gate, by improving routine maintenance and ground turnaround, we have managed to improve both our on-time performance and within-15 minutes departure, which is bringing us ahead of the industry-wide standard, ”he said.
Adel Ali, Gulf Air’s Vice President, Commercial and Customer Services, struck a similarly upbeat note on recent progress made by the airline.
“In reaction to recent events, some airlines have made significant cutbacks in their services to the Gulf region, but Gulf Air is determined to maintain its schedule.
“We have 18 flights a week between London and the Gulf. All our other European, African, Sub-Continental and Far Eastern stations are operational. We are providing 138 intra-Gulf connections every week, significantly more than any other airline. In spite of the current crisis, Gulf Air is strengthening its position as the number one carrier within the Gulf, ”he said
Gulf Air is, however, re-examining its route strategy.
The number of destinations in the peak summer season was 52, a figure which Mr Al Hamer says will be rationalised if necessary. Studies will also be carried out into the possibility of opening profitable new routes, with either direct connections or through code shares with other carriers.
With management changes and more efficient operations being implemented, Gulf Air looks set to soar to greater heights.