BMAM703 Managing Operations- Information And Knowledge

BMAM703 Managing Operations- Information And Knowledge

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BMAM703 Managing Operations, Information And Knowledge

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BMAM703 Managing Operations, Information And Knowledge

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Course Code: BMAM703
University: University Of Westminster is not sponsored or endorsed by this college or university

Country: United Kingdom


Task 1:Operational success depends on a systematic approach to planning and control of the input resources in order to effectively deliver the product and/or service.  This is underpinned by a clear understanding of the overall production/delivery process and the critical factors that determine operational success.A. Based on the principle of the transformation process, critically determine the systems that enable the efficient use of input resources and the impact that these have to the effective output of the good and services supplied by Gate Gourmet.  B. Provide concluding evaluations that explore the existence of trade-off within Gate Gourmet and the challenges faced by following this approach.
Task 2:Suppliers play a critical role in enabling operational objectives to be met.  A. By deploying an integrated system Gate Gourmet have established a consistent standard of operation within the supply chain activities.  Critically determine the positive and negative implications of this in the management of suppliers, including supplier selection.B.  Provide concluding recommendations as to the approach that can be taken to enable less advanced suppliers to establish and maintain a system that meets these standards.
Task3:Gate Gourmet has information in a wide range of related areas of the business. A. Identify TWO challenges for them in implementing organisation wide information systems (ERP). B. Giving specific examples, assess in depth a small number of their ERP implementation problems and identify ways of addressing each challenge.
Task 4:Gate Gourmet use a large amount of information in order to deliver their service. A. Identify a specific and narrow area where the organisation’s human tacit and implicit knowledge is essential in order to make sense of hard statistical information. B. Analyse with examples how that tacit or implicit knowledge enhances performance in your chosen area, demonstrating clearly which type of knowledge is being used in each example and why. 


One of the most recognized airline catering companies of the world, Gate Gourmet has emerged to be the largest independent airline catering, hospitality as well as logistic company. Headquartered in Zurich Airport, Switzerland, the company was founded in the year of 1992, and since its inception, the company has been evolving its business via its unprecedented products and services offerings to the travel industry. The very reason why the organization has been able to emerge as one of the most successful companies in the industry is the sophisticated supply chain solutions that help it offer each of its consumers, a comprehensive scope of products and services for virtually any form of onboard need. The innovative menu design, stylish packaging as well as a wide range of culinary services has helped the company emerge as the second largest airline catering company of the world, offering 354 thousand meals a day across as much as 30 different countries over the globe ( 2017).
In order to schedule and operate its global chian of supply management, the Gate Gourmet adopts technology integrated systems, and the combination of technology, expertise and information help the company gain competitive edge over the rival firms. In the light of this discussion, the present report intends to discuss, critically analyse and evaluate the effectiveness of the use of integrated systems in the supply chain management process and offer recommendations, if necessary for the same. Further, the report also intends to critically analyse the challenges the company encounters in the implementation of ERP system within the organization, and offer multiple ways of addressing the problem. At the end, the report will offer recommendations as to how the Gate Gourmet can improve the ‘virtual’ supply chain management solution.
The operational and logistical expertise possessed by Gate Gourmet is unquestionable. The entire company is built on the principles of operational development as well as infrastructure management, that has helped the company deploy operational standards as well as best practices across all its functional areas. With the globalization of supply chain management as well as competitive pressure that each organization presently encounters, it has become indispensible to adopt the principles of Transformation Process in order to deliver high quality service to the consumers. In order to ensure that the input resources are being efficiently utilized to offer excellent output services, Gate Gourmet has largely transformed and evolved its supply chain management. According to the Principle of Transformation Process, an organization must develop a supply chain technology strategy that forecasts, produces and plans the logistic decisions in an effective way. In accordance with the Transformation Principle of Supply Chain Management, Gate Gourmet has installed the main information system named Scala that facilitates its coordination of the logistics, purchases, kitchen activities and the financial activities (Zarvic and Wieringa 2014). The specific details of the meals, personal choices of each of the consumers, the timing of the flight, and the details of the recipes are all contained in the database of Scala. As a result, the customer specific food products can be easily served to the consumers. Scala helps the company stay updated regarding the number of passengers and their food demands, and thus offer high quality food products to each one (Christopher 2016). According to the Transformation Process Principle, while converting the input into the output, an organization should try to integrate the consumer decisions so as to add value to the consumer point of view as well. In order to involve the consumer decisions in the decision-making process, Gate Gourmet has also introduced and installed the e-gate matrix that helps it to stay connected with its suppliers as well as consumers. The change in meal items or the cancellation of the flight schedules and hence the cancellation of meals is vital information that can be communicated by the consumers to the Gate Gourmet staffs via the e-gate matrix. The operational success of any company largely relies on the extent to which a company can deliver its products or services satisfactorily at the right time and in the right place. In order to add value to the final products or services offered to the consumers, it is indispensible that the quality of services offered is high. While the Scala helps the company to ensure that the meals and the accessories are being provided to the consumers at the right time and in the right amount, the HACCP helps in the area of food safety and quality management. Gate Gourmet is known for serving 700,000 quality meals to over 3,000 flights every single week in the UK alone, and the same is possible only because the company has been able to ensure good quality food to the consumers (Fleischmann et al. 2014). Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point is a food safety management system implemented at Gate Gourmet that allows the company conduct as many as 1200 food safety checks each day and maintain a food safety record that helps the company offer food free from harmful pathogens or foreign bodies. In fact, it is also interesting to mention here that each employee of Gate Gourmet is trained in areas of sanitation, hygiene and proper food handling services to ensure effective provision of high quality food to the consumers.
Evaluation of Tradeoffs within Gate Gourmet:
The tradeoffs stay within any organization, and yet how and when to reorganize a trade off is a frequent problem organizations are encountered with. The Gate Gourmet, as seen from the above discussion, has been able to gain much recognition by effective quality control management system as well as integrated data system, and yet the expenses incurred on the infrastructure of the company is too high. The company in order to enable the efficient use of inputs and effective delivery of its outputs employs the use of software such as Scala and E-gate matrix, the maintenance of which undoubtedly implies additional cost on part of the company. Further, the company also works in collaboration with the cleaning staffs and baggage handlers to ensure hassle-free and speedy delivery of services (Mao et al. 2017). While this helps the company gain sustainable advantage over other airline catering companies as the ERP helps in the effective inventory management within the organization, its implementation and upgrade is way too expensive. The common trade off that the company encounters is that in order to ensure quality service provision, it will need to maintain integrated software, and yet on the other hand, the maintenance of the software can squeeze its profit margin. However, since the efficient flow of information can help in the reduction of demand fluctuation, making inventory management much easier, the company chooses to invest in infrastructure.
Positive and Negative implications of the Implementation of Integrated System within Gate Gourmet and Recommendations:
The integrated system adopted by Gate Gourmet helps the company in effective inventory management, operational efficiency as well as it results in higher consumer satisfaction rates. Since Scala is the main information system, its database contains all the relevant information regarding the meal choices and taste preferences of the customers as well as the timing of flight arrival and departure and cancellation of flights. The implementation of an integrated database has helped the company connect its customers with the suppliers as well as the workers. The daily demand of meals for every passenger can be easily calculated, without any manual error, ensuring right amount of food at the right time. Besides, owing to the presence of the e-gate matrix, Gate Gourmet is able to gain access to all the information regarding flight delays, flight cancellation, new request of the consumers for additional food services, and consequently the quality of consumer service offered is much higher. However, as far as the negative impacts are concerned, it should be remembered that the implementation of the integrated software leads to higher expenses, as the installation as well as the upgrade of the ERP software do involve huge expenditure (Ahmad and Cuenca 2013). The use of integrated software in business definitely increases organizational productivity, and yet it involves recruitment of experienced workers, who can handle the ERP and update and communicate the information effectively. Hence, it also implies additional cost to be incurred.
It becomes clear from the above discussion that the use of integrated database helps the company achieve improved supply chain network, enhanced collaboration amongst its staffs and minimized delays in the operational activities, and yet the less advanced suppliers may encounter problems in embracing the integrated system. Hence, sufficient training should be provided to the suppliers who lack sufficient knowledge and expertise in the area of ERP management, so that they can acquainted with the process of updating and communicating information via ERP software (Forbes,com 2017). Besides, at the same time, a traditional approach can also be introduced for connecting with the suppliers, who do not possess sufficient skills, knowledge or expertise in the area of information management via database.
Challenges in Implementing Organization Wide Information System:
The ERP implementation in Gate Gourmet has largely helped the company integrate its information in one place, connect its suppliers and consumers with the working staffs, effective manage the operational activities while ensuring high quality service being delivered to each consumer. However, despite the wide use of ERP software in business, there are frequent challenges an organization employing the use of ERP software is encountered with. The technical issue is a challenge that has been encountered by the company during the time of its implementation, as a huge number of workers and servers had to be revised in order to accommodate the new system. Besides, at Gate Gourmet, the internal network also needed to be analyzed and modernized for accommodating the new system (Forbes 2017). Besides, another important challenge encountered by the management authority of Gate Gourmet, is that with the shift to a more advanced technology, the business philosophy of the company was also drastically changed. Since the employees of the organization, especially the chefs and the suppliers had not been so far acquainted with a technologically-based business model, many of them did not know how to handle the data, update important facts or pass on the information to the relevant authority. While the level of responsibility of some of the employees dramatically increased, others were confused with the new approaches of data mining and data reporting, as well as new managerial principles and practices. The entirely massive transformation in the business model in the post—implementation process, and the confusion amongst the workers during the pre-implementation process indeed emerged to be a huge challenge.  
ERP Challenges as Faced by Gate Gourmet and Recommendations:
The common changes faced by the company as a result of the implementation of the ERP system include the change in business philosophy, the apathy amongst the employees towards the new system as well as the technical issues. Since these are the common issues encountered by organizations during the post-implementation phase, it would be interesting to find out the recommendations for the same. The technical challenge is a major problem and hence to get rid of the problem, it is advised that the company can use the cloud options available in the market. Plenty of “as a service” and in the cloud options have become available, offering hosted infrastructure, data storage and software services, which now allow the cost and headache of applications, hardware, network, and storage problems to be minimized. These include software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), and infrastructure as a service (IaaS). Again, the change in the business philosophy may not be welcome by the users, who may feel sceptical about their change in business responsibilities and the challenges of new job roles. Hence, it is advised that the management authority of the organization offers sufficient training to its employees, as well as communicate the scope, benefits and purpose of the ERP implementation to the employees (Kilic 2015). The employees should be made aware of the fact how it can refresh the business and lay a strategic foundation to the future of the organization. At the same time, the organization should also establish reliable and effective feedback communication channels so that in case the employees or the suppliers are able to ventilate their opinions about the new system (Mangan and Lalwani 2016).
Application of Tacit Knowledge in Enhancing Performance in the Chosen Business Area of Gate Gourmet:
The tacit knowledge of intuition and creativity can be used in order to enhance the performance of the organization. The chosen business area is food cooking management, and the cooking staffs can be asked to make the food in collaboration with a famous chef. While working with a popular chef, not only the chefs and other staffs will feel motivated to learn new food, but will also be able to get them trained well. Right from cooking food till garnishing the items in the most impressive way, the working staffs will be trained about the ways that can help them deliver efficient service to the consumers (Vaz et al. 2016). At the same time, the creativity can also be utilized in order to arrange customized food items for the passengers. In case any of the passengers has a birthday on a specific day, the customer care department may make customized food items for the person.
There is no gain stating the fact that Gate Gourmet has been able to achieve enormous recognition over the last years, and one of the major reasons why the company is able to achieve such recognition and success, is that the company has been able to successfully integrate the supply networks irrespective of the ownership of its constituents. The use of advanced software helps in gaining access to an integrated database that can help the company connect with its users, suppliers and consumers as well. Further, the use of quality control measures helps the company offer 100% consumer satisfaction. As a leading independent provider of airline catering services, Gate Gourmet has effectively incorporated the use of technology, by installing the ERP software that not only helps it in gaining access to the information of the consumers, but also enables it to keep updated about the consumers’ status, so as to deliver high quality, timely service to the clients.
However, in order to ensure the long-term sustenance of the company in future, it would be important to advise a few recommendations to the company. Often the catering service providers fail to offer service to the consumers in proper time, and the flight departs before the food is being delivered to them. Tough such instances are less the failure to meet the promised date can easily result in the loss of organizational reputation. Hence, it is recommended that Gate Gourmet introduces Live Chat service for its consumers, and as part of the ERP software system, it can help the customers stay updated regarding the food orders and their delivery tine. A customer care unit will have to be introduced that can take care of the queries and complaints of the customers in the given time. It is not sufficient for the companies to install ERP software, but it is equally important to monitor the effectiveness of the service in the post-ERP implementation phase. In order to ensure maximum performance of these systems, even after a successful deployment, it is necessary, and even essential, to rely on an ERP monitoring platform, which allows the company to check the stability, performance, and system performance as well. The maintenance cost of ERP software is very high, and since it adds up to the expenditure of the organization, immediate steps should be taken to reduce the same. The company should keep on regularly upgrading its software with the help of an upgrade partner such as Syntax that can help in reducing the time and expense of upgrading the software. The company should not only employ the use of ERP in getting in touch with the consumers, and keeping themselves updated regarding their needs, but should also install the customer centric KPIs. It is important to analyse how the consumers are behaving over the course of time, in order for the company to become customer-centric, it’s vital to develop and maintain a set of customer-oriented key performance indicators (KPIs). 
Reference List:
Ahmad, M.M. and Cuenca, R.P., 2013. Critical success factors for ERP implementation in SMEs. Robotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing, 29(3), pp.104-111.
Christopher, M., 2016. Logistics & supply chain management. Pearson UK.
Fleischmann, A., Schmidt, W., Stary, C., Obermeier, S. and Brger, E., 2014. Subject-oriented business process management. Springer Publishing Company, Incorporated.
Forbes., 2017. OracleVoice: Going All In On Cloud ERP Boosts Business And IT Process Effectiveness At KBBO. [online] Available at: [Accessed 9 Jun. 2017].,2017. Forbes Welcome. [online] Available at: [Accessed 9 Jun. 2017].,2017. Forbes Welcome. [online] Available at: [Accessed 9 Jun. 2017]. 2017 . About Gate Gourmet. [online] Available at: [Accessed 9 Jun. 2017].
Kilic, H.S., Zaim, S. and Delen, D., 2015. Selecting “The Best” ERP system for SMEs using a combination of ANP and PROMETHEE methods. Expert Systems with Applications, 42(5), pp.2343-2352.
Mangan, J. and Lalwani, C., 2016. Global logistics and supply chain management. John Wiley & Sons.
Mao, K., Capra, L., Harman, M. and Jia, Y., 2017. A survey of the use of crowdsourcing in software engineering. Journal of Systems and Software, 126, pp.57-84.
Vaz, D.S., Nobre, I.C.N., Rodrigues, E.F. and Junior, L.T.K., 2016. Quality HACCP applied to flight catering industry. Independent Journal of Management & Production, 7(5), pp.729-745.
Zarvi?, N. and Wieringa, R., 2014. An integrated enterprise architecture framework for business-IT alignment. Designing Enterprise Architecture Frameworks: Integrating Business Processes with IT Infrastructure, 63.

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