Good Case Study About Chemical Management At Delta Air Lines
In entering into this new relationship with InterfaceLLC, Delta faces a number of strategic risks. First and foremost, the whole process might turn out to be costly. Previously, the tracking of chemicals purchased was labor intensive and mostly difficult. The company is likely to spend much more purchasing their products. This is because, as part of the agreement, InterfaceLLC would act as a ‘gatekeeper’ to the chemicals moved offsite and still sell the same to Delta. Secondly, depending on a single supplier is being unpredictable and impulsive. Concentrating on InterfaceLLC as the sole supplier is risking operational failure in case there are delays in the deliveries (Bierma, 1999). Such a situation could paralyze operations and hinder a smooth flow of activities. Further, Delta risked being duped into saving costs at the cost of improved performance. Though the program seemed to improve performance from the start, the long-term was too unpredictable for improved performance in light with competitors.
Despite the existence of risks, the program created a number of strategic opportunities for Delta. First and foremost, the room created space for advancement and improved facilitation. For instance, freeing 30000 square feet of space created room for maintenance purposes and other services. Secondly, the program created a way for simplifying the supplier base. Having 350 suppliers would create a situation where there lacked a centralized way of reconciling purchased chemicals from different suppliers. Another significant opportunity created through the program with InterfaceLLC is the ability and simplicity to track the purchasing of chemicals and hence, reduce costs and the labor involved (Kannegiesser, 2008). In general, the program created room for expansion and improvement that are two vital components of organizational success. Remarkably, improving service levels, reducing costs and improving overall performance gave Delta an opportunity to handle chemicals in a modern and efficient way.
On the other hand, there are a number of risks that InterfaceLLC faced after initiating the program at Delta. The future of the program is solely in the hands of Delta. As much as the program may prove to be a success for both firms, any future decision by Delta to refute the program might jeopardize InterfaceLLCs’ operations and existence. Further, being a sole supplier also opens up flaws especially in the delivery of chemicals both to and from Delta (Greenberg, 1991). In the event of such situation, the whole program might be compromised. More significantly, the agreement made with Delta is a single but multifaceted contract that does not necessarily bring the whole picture of InterfaceLLCs’ input of chemical management. This endangers the viability of the program and makes it vulnerable to future unfeasibility (Bierma, 1999). In essence, if necessary measures are not put in place, then the success of the program might be short-lived. Firms normally fight for long-term improved performance. Therefore, in case Delta makes a move to cut-off the contract due to short-lived improved performance and success, the whole program will be compromised.
Nevertheless, there are a number of opportunities that InterfaceLLC has due to the initiation of the program. The most significant and available opportunity is the chance to advance and expand its services to airlines. For a successful firm, advancement opportunities normally creep in faster especially when there is a track record of excellent performance (Kannegiesser, 2008). Interface LLC overcame any of the concerns that Delta had on the program while improving performance and reducing corresponding costs. The gains from the program implied that the program was a success. In addition, the firm now has a chance to negotiate other chemical contracts with Delta. A flourishing sole supplier, there are chances that Delta might consider InterfaceLLC for other chemical programs. This would not only see increased revenue but, would also serve as an avenue for expanding the consumer base. More chemical contracts will open ways of reaching out to more customers.
In the light of the success of the program, InterfaceLLC has a number of product-oriented environmental strategies as they continue to expand their service offerings both to Delta and other firms. First, there is a need to ensure that the amounts of chemicals disposed to not harm the environment in any manner. The company can ensure that disposals are made at a single site with amounts limited to the standards provided by the Environmental Protection Division (USA Environmental Protection Agency). Furthermore, InterfaceLLC can plan for how the emissions into the air at Delta can be limited to the required standards. This can be done by tracking the level of chemicals that are emitted into the air as a result of Delta’s operations. Apart from these, InterfaceLLC can also ensure that the chemicals delivered and used at Delta are within the required standards and that are less harmful to the environment (Greenberg, 1991). Notably, product-oriented environmental strategies especially in the context of airline companies are designed to protect the environment through un-harmful production and effective handling of (chemical) products (Bierma, 1999).
Besides product-oriented environmental strategies, there are process-oriented environmental strategies that InterfaceLLC should ensure while expanding its service offering. InterfaceLLC could make the most of electronic data sharing and exchange on the program to ascertain the accuracy much required. When producing chemical products, processing is one significant aspect that should always be done accurately and precisely (USA Environmental Protection Agency). Accuracy avoids cases where chemicals are either unfeasible to operations making them wasteful hence, harming the environment. Moreover, InterfaceLLC can design a centralized station for counterchecking chemicals before being disposed off or delivered to Delta. Through such processes, flaws that could otherwise affect the environment in a negative manner could be avoided. In general, in order to guarantee environmentally friendly products and processes, InterfaceLLC requires more than a single chemical management plan.
At Delta, an individual in charge of chemical management should first revise the chemical list that is necessary to operations hence the purchasing of chemicals that are less harmful to the environment yet efficient in their function. Such chemicals would reduce the vulnerability of environmental pollution from air emissions. Secondly, one should also change the manner in which chemicals are stored awaiting usage (Leewen, 1995). Further, the purchasing of extra chemicals should also be discouraged as it creates a backlog that might cause operational jam. Chemical jam especially in an operations context is hazardous. Another aspect that requires potential change is the tracking of all relevant data related to chemical use. This should be done effectively despite the fact that InterfaceLLC could also be obligated to track the same data. Effective tracking of this data helps keep accurate records of how chemicals usage and the amount which is ready for disposal including the vulnerability of the chemicals in affecting the environment negatively.
At InterfaceLLC, one should first consider changing chemical handling practices before they are disposed off or before they are sent back to Delta. This consideration includes evaluating the toxic levels of these chemicals and correspondingly establishing the best way to dispose them. More significantly, InterfaceLLC needs to revise the list of chemicals that are delivered to Delta to ensure that they meet the required standards, are relevant to the firm's operations and are less harmful to the environment (Leewen, 1995). Rather than simply re-packaging the chemicals into considerable amounts, efforts need to be put in place to assess the feasibility of the chemicals to the operations before delivery. This helps reduce cases of toxic chemicals emissions into the air without the knowledge of either party but to the disadvantage of the public. In general, assessment and evaluation of the viability of chemicals and their corresponding danger to the environment should be done before deployment.
Bierma, J. T., (1999). Chemical Management: Reducing Waste and Cost through Innovative Supply Strategies. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Greenberg, R. H., (1991). Risk Assessment and Risk Management for the Chemical Process Industry. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Kannegiesser, M., (2008). Value Chain Management in the Chemical Industry: Global Value Chain Planning of Commodities. California: Springer Science & Business Media.
Leewen, J. C., (1995). Assessment of Chemicals: An Introduction. California: Springer Science & Business Media.
USA Environmental Protection Agency. Chemical Management Services. Retrieved from <www.epa.gov/epawaste/hazard/wastemin/minimize/cms.htm>. Accessed on 17th Feb, 2015.