Qatar Airways which is seen as one of aviation industry’s most successful brands of all times is the official flag carrier of the country. The airline was launched for the first time in the year 1994 as a regional airline which was running just a minimum number of routes.It was relaunched as the official flag carrier in the year 1997 by the King of Saudi Arabia, following which it started running international flights to multiple destinations across the globe.
The airline operated in the hub and spoke format wherein they connect to around 150 destinations across the world. The regions connected by the airline include Europe, Middle East, Africa, Far East, Central Asia, North America, Oceania, South America, and South Asia. The airline has a fleet size of around 214 and employs around 40,000 people out of which 24,000 people are direct recruits of the airline. The airline is a member of the Oneworld Alliance and operates from the Qatar Airport as its hub.
Strengths in the SWOT analysis of Qatar Airways
The unique capabilities of a business which its competitors do not possess allow a company or an organization to gain an edge in the industry. These capabilities are known as strengths. CoverGirl features the following the strengths:
- Clear Target Segment: The target segment of Qatar Airways have always been the people who travel in luxury class and also can afford to pay for the service. In addition to having a clear target segment, the airline also has a very high level of brand loyalty since it is the official airline of the country.
- Strong backing of management: The airline has been backed by the government as well as has a strong leadership. The strategies weaved by the leaders and the vision they had were critical factors which resulted in the steep yet fast growth of the airline. In fact, it was the attitude of the leadership towards progress orientation is what has helped the airline beat most of the older airline companies.
- Trend recognition: Qatar Airways have not just been quick to spot trends in the market but also to respond quickly to them. They have always compared themselves to leading airline brands across the world and have been consistent in following benchmarks set by premium airlines in various service aspects.
- In-flight Services: The Qatar airlines has been targeting a luxury class clientele has been popular for their impeccable in flight as well as off-board services. Right from check in the airline takes every possible step including online check-in, minimal waiting time, the safety of baggage etc to in-flight entertainment, customised meal options, comfortable lounge seating etc the airline has taken care to ensure that customer is comfortable at every juncture of the travel.
- The real name for luxury – Qatar Airways is renowned for their top grade luxury class travel. The business and first-class passengers have access to fresh flowers, relaxed seating, world cuisines, top grade wines and chandeliers. They try to replicate a five-star experience in their business class travel making them highly satisfied in their experience.
- Cultural Consciousness: Qatar Airways exhibits a high level of cross-cultural consciousness. Many of their flights quite unlike competitors incorporate regional cuisines in their menu. They also ensure that they have a highly diverse in-flight staff so that customers feel at ease throughout the services.
Weaknesses in the SWOT analysis of Qatar Airways
Weaknesses are used to refer to areas where the business or the brand needs improvement. Some of the key weaknesses of Qatar Airlines are :
- Cost Management: Qatar Airlines focuses primarily on business class for which there is a lot of expense in maintaining the quality of services as well as the facilities. In addition to this, there is also fluctuations in fuel prices as well as wage issues from unionisation. These make cost management critical.
- Competition from low-cost airlines: There is a surge in the number of low-cost airlines. To add fuel to this trend the global recession has resulted in many companies slashing their travel budgets with the result that people have started preferring budget travel. This has resulted in stiff competition for luxury airlines from low-cost players.
- Political changes: Qatar is right in the middle of major strife zones of the world such as Syria, Palestine etc which is preventing people from performing the airline. Moreover, global issues like Brexit, financial recession, fluctuations in the US dollar etc are all creating the continuous need for changes for the airline.
Opportunities in the SWOT analysis of Qatar Airways
- The surge in airline usage: With growing need for time, travelers have started using more of air travel than road or rail. The growing connectivity of Qatar airlines to various parts of the worlds is making it a preferred choice of globetrotters.
Threats in the SWOT analysis of Qatar Airways
Threats are those factors in the environment which can be detrimental to the growth of the business. Some of the threats include:
- Competition: The major competitor of Qatar Airlines is Emirates and Etihad Airlines.