I've seen loads of posts on here recently about BA
suspending routes, many of the posts seem to feel that BA
has not fully considered the implications of doing this.
Anyway, last week I picked up the latest copy of the weekly 'BA News' (Staff paper) and there was a whole spread in there about the job of 'Network Planning'. It went on to describe all its duties, which includes deciding to suspend a route.
From Robert Boyle, Diector of Commercial Planning, BA
's route network strategy can be divided into three main categories. Heathrow serves as the airline's hub, serving point-to-point and transfer flows. Gatwick is biased toward shorthaul point-to-pont services, leisure oriented longhaul destinations, and serving US destinations, which are prevented by bilateral agreement from being operated from Heathrow. The third is BA
's regional network, mainly serviced by BA
citiExpress. Before prposing to suspend an exisiting route, network planning will monitor the route for a period of time and try various actions to stem losses. For example they may ask the sales or marketing teams to give the route a more specific focus, and perhaps review fares. To reduce the routes costs, network planning may also consider changing the aircraft to a smaller type, or reducing frequencies. If these measures fail to improve results, network planning looks at whether the route is making a positive contribution to the route network as a whole. For example, a route may not be profitable in it's own right, but it may add high volume demand onto other routes in the network. Only after these factors have been considered will network plan that a route be suspended. Once they have agreed to a detailed proposal about suspending or adding a route, network planning presents this to the leadership team, who make the final decision."