Sunteți pe pagina 1din 34

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

CORPORATE REPUTATION SINGAPORE AIRLINES

MANAGING CORPORATE REPUTATION CANDIDATE NUMBER: 10884942 TOTAL WORD COUNT: 6163 TASK ONE WORD COUNT: 4077 TASK TWO WORD COUNT: 2086 DECEMBER 11

CANDIDATE DECLARATION I confirm that in forwarding this assignment for marking, I understand and have applied the CIM policies relating to word count, plagiarism and collusion for all tasks. This project is the result of my own independent work/investigation except where otherwise stated. Other sources are acknowledged in the body text and/or a bibliography is appended and Harvard referencing has been used. I have not shared my work with other candidates. I further confirm that I have submitted an electronic copy of this assessment to CIM in accordance with the regulations.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

TABLE OF CONTENT Task One Marketing Strategy Executive Summary... 1.0 What is corporate reputation?. 2.0 The Importance of Managing corporate reputation for Singapore Airlines 3.0 How does Singapore Airlines currently manage its corporate reputation... 4.0 Implementation of Change & Control Mechanisms References. 03 04 07 13 16 20

Task Two Case Study 1.0 Introduction.. 23 2.0 Why should corporates look to do CSR activities?........................ . 22 3.0 Why communicate Corporate Social Responsibility... 4.0 Communication of Corporate Social Responsibility activities... 5.0 How should Singapore Airlines Improve its corporate communication 6.0 Financial & Human Resource Requirement.. References 24 25 28 29 30

APPENDIX ONE 31 APPENDIX TWO... 33 APPENDIX THREE.... 34

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Executive Summary

The following is a report that gives insight as to how Singapore Airlines currently Manages its corporate reputation & recommendations for improvements. This report will evaluate what corporate reputation is & the key elements that make up corporate reputation then the report will dwell deeper into the 3 main aspects that create corporate reputation and see how the key drivers play a pivotal role in this endeavor. Then we shall observe how these factors are used in the context of Singapore Airlines and how they currently undertake their corporate reputation activities. We shall also elaborate further on the importance and advantages of having a good corporate reputation. Next we will take a look at the current practice of Singapore Airlines and evaluate its method. Following that analysis it is only prudent to offer customized recommendations best suited to improve Singapore Airlines position with regards to Corporate evaluation. For this purpose we will make clear concise recommendations using appropriate frameworks to help illustrate the requirement.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

1.0 What is Corporate Reputation? Corporate reputation as defined by Fromburn (96) is the overall estimation in which an organization is held by its constituents Corporate reputation cannot be built with advertising. Advertising cannot create a corporate image it can only communicate it. Corporate reputation could be earned through elements such as product quality & customer service.

There are 3 main elements of corporate reputation they are,


Corporate Personality Corporate Identity Corporate Image

Graph 1.0 The above three elements have a direct impact on the organizations reputation however in order to have a positive corporate reputation the following four elements as illustrated by Fombrun (1996) would have to be taken into consideration, Credibility Trustworthiness Reliability Responsibility

Credibility The organization should have a good name amongst its peers, market & industry its character should be one of that is visible, high status & competent. It should be subjective in its dealings & approaches. Trustworthiness Integrity, honesty & fair play should be core values embedded in the organization. Transparency amongst its various stakeholders in its intended levels should be practiced. Relationship marketing should be the key strategy of its activities.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Reliability Modern day consumers require immediate gratification or else they are easily persuaded to opt for a competitors product. Doubt can spread fast hence maintaining a clear brand promise & delivering as promised is of utmost importance. Responsibility All organizations have a responsibility ethically as well as legally. Its community, environment, employees, customers & all stakeholders well-being is a part of this responsibility. Hence maintaining a cordial relationship with the afore mentioned parties is compulsory to a organizations success. We will now take a look at how the above mentioned 4 elements play a pivotal role at each stage of corporate reputation, Corporate Personality The primary focus of this element would be to gain an understanding of Corporate as a person, what kind of perception the corporate would represent if it were an individual. Corporate Personality could be further divided into two main sub sections namely Corporate Culture Strategy Process

Corporate Culture. This would refer to its values, beliefs & assumptions & way things are done in an organization. Strategy Process Refers to the how the organization seeks to achieve its objectives & how the relationship with the stakeholders are developed & maintained. Corporate personality primarily says who the company is and how they do the things they do.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Corporate Culture & work Environment. In order to further illustrate the elements of corporate culture we could use the Cultural Web concept by Johnson, Scholes & Whittington (2005). The Paradigm Singapore Airlines main goal is to provide unprecedented levels of Service & product offering whilst achieving sustainable development & creating value for both Shareholders & employees. Stories - Singapore Airlines is proud of its past achievements & awards as well as the various accolades received for being the first airline to come our with new innovations or products eg: First to fly the Airbus A380. Routines Singapore Airlines is an active Socially responsible organization with various charitable activities being undertaken both centrally as well as through its wide route network (local context) it also holds a staff excellence awards every year to recognize outstanding staff contributions. Organizational Structure Singapore Airlines boasts a mixture of formal & collaborative management style but still adopts a more top to bottom structure with regards to higher management. Control Systems The staff is given the freedom to make informed decision in accordance to the given parameters set by the higher management exceptions to the rule of course would have to be referred to the General Manager who has been empowered to take adequate actions. Power Structure The responsibility or power has been distributed amongst the staff in accordance to their relevant field of expertise. Hence it differs from individual to individual. Symbols Singapore Airlines signature symbol would be the Singapore Girl who is recognized as the face of the airline and is recognizable any where in the world.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Personality Profile could also be undertaken to get a more broader understanding of the afore mentioned topic, here we would be adopting the Personality Profile theory as created by Lux (1986) Needs Singapore Airlines always strives to grow its route network & increase its service levels in order to be recognized as one of the best airlines. Competences Singapore Airlines is in the forefront of new products & innovations and sets the highest service levels for its staff in order to satisfy customer needs. Attitude The primary focus of Singapore Airlines is to deliver the highest product & service to its customers. Constitution Singapore Airlines is based in Singapore, which is its Hub & operates to more than 60 cities across 30 countries worldwide. Temperament Singapore Airlines is a very aggressive competitor & looks to leverage on its superior product offering & brand excellence to win customer preference. Origin Singapore Airlines was established in 1972 & calls Singapore its home. Interest The mission statement of Singapore Airlines is Singapore Airlines is a global company dedicated to providing air transportation services of the highest quality and to maximizing returns for the benefit of its shareholders and employees."

Corporate Identity Corporate identity as defined by Topalian 1984 is the set of meanings by which a company allows itself to be known and through which it allows people to describe, remember & relate to it It also could be further elaborated through the identity mix, Symbolism this usually pertains to the symbols used that would be synonymous and would easily help to identify the corporate for example The Singapore Girl is synonymous with Singapore airlines and its brand promise which is superior product & service. Communication This would refer to the activity of advertising and how the communications are worded & which media is chosen to broadcast this message. For example Singapore Airlines never fails to use their tagline A Great Way to Fly in their communications and usually employ all forms of media for its communication. Behavior This element is usually supported by the various accolades that a corporate has received since it has fulfilled its brand promise and has been recognized by the public and its peers. For example Singapore Airlines has been the recipient of many prestiges awards which helps reconfirm its position as a market leader & innovator that always delivers over and beyond what is expected of them.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Corporate Image Constitutes on how the stakeholders of the organization would view corporate brands and its identity mix,
Differentiation

Recognition

Psychic Value

THE BRAND
Registerable Name Premium

Transferability

Graph 2.0

Brand Assets Differentiation Singapore Airlines clearly pursues a differentiation strategy when marketing its products & services since it is always focused on value creation through superior service standards. This is aspect is closely followed across all its cabin classes in order to provide consistently improving levels of service. Recognition This would refer to how well the product or service is being recognized by the consumer, it could be assessed through the use of unaided recall (eg: Could you name the worlds leading airline?) here consumers would most often associate Singapore Airlines as their top of the mind airline. This is method is useful when determining brand rankings. The Singapore Girl is also a well-recognized icon for Singapore Airlines. Along with its famous tagline A Great Way to Fly is always a point of reference for consumers around the world for this great product.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Psychic Value. Stakeholders may value brands based on its rational attributes such as financial performance, service quality, product size, etc. However many associations made with brands are mpre psychological eg: Youthfulness, trendy ness, charisma etc. Such attributes maybe harder to measure since they cannot be clearly defined by the users nevertheless this emotional influence is most important in the decision making process. Hence the reason for Singapore Airlines to be very meticulous when designing their staff uniforms as well as maintaining a new & innovative product helps the customer feel more confident & reassured when using Singapore Airlines. Premium Pricing Leading brands have the ability to sustain & demand a premium price as opposed to other unbranded products. Hence the reason Singapore Airlines is able to entice customers to pay a price premium for its products & services. Having a premium pricing would also signify high quality as that is the general consensus. 2.0 The Importance of Managing corporate reputation for Singapore Airlines. Singapore Airlines considers their corporate reputation as an important asset to the company. The company works very closely with its employees, shareholders and partners to ensure that the highest service & product standards are met to ensure to build the companies good name. Key benefits of having a good corporate reputation for Singapore Airlines There are many benefits of having a good corporate reputation a few could be described as, Increased stakeholder support Singapore Airlines would be able to achieve its objectives with greater ease if it is able to maintain a good reputation with its key stakeholders namely its Priority Passengers, key business travelers, travel agents & employees. With a good reputation customers will prefer doing more business with Singapore Airlines. Word of mouth endorsement would help build the corporate brand as well. Singapore Airlines has been the recipient of AsiaOne Peoples Choice Awards 2010 (Singapore) Best Full Service Airline Travel agents would always prefer to take that extra effort into promoting Singapore Airlines due to its rapport with the market & the positive persona that associates its reputation.

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Improved financial performance By managing the corporate reputation in a positive manner Singapore Airlines is able to perform better in the airline industry as opposed to some of its competition since people prefer to travel with Singapore airlines. Such instances were especially important during the economic recession that hit the world in 2009 this had a major impact on the aviation industry and forced many airlines to cut short its operations & in some instances its fleet in order to weather the storm, how ever Singapore Airlines was able to sustain its operations & manage the financial crisis with the least impact. Premium Prices for products & services With a positive corporate reputation Singapore Airlines adds value to all its product offerings, which enables them to charge a price premium for its products & services. This in return helps increase profits for the company.

As per Fomburn and van reil there are many factors that affect corporate reputation some examples would be competitive effectiveness, market leadership, customer focus, corporate culture, communication, emotional appeal, products & services, vision & leadership, financial performance & social responsibility. Social Responsibility Singapore Airlines has been a loyal servant of Corporate Social Responsibility for a considerable time and has managed to leverage its successes in this area to help build a strong corporate reputation. Singapore Airlines Cabin Crew Club for Community Care (5Cs) is responsible for organizing annual activities for the students of the Chao Yang Special School regularly. It has also been apart of many international community projects such as providing the air passage for aid workers to Dhaka for a special project to help prevent hearing loss in garment factory workers. CSR activities usually receive free publicity from Newspapers as well as positive word of mouth which is deemed priceless in any trade and should be apart of the budget since it is an integral part of the organizations welfare.

10

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Financial Performance Singapore Airlines Parent Airline Company has been able to make a operating profit of SGD 53 Million in the 1st half of the 2011/12 financial year. Pursuant to a rights issue by Tiger Airways Holdings Limited (Tiger Airways) Singapore airlines have sustained their stake in the company, which is 32.8%. Profits have seen a decline as opposed to the last year however the group has been able to increase revenue by 3% due to higher passenger yields despite the weak business sentiment & stiff competition this is mainly attributed to the organizations strong corporate reputation. Such factors help the organization be recognized as a financially stable corporate entity and increase its stance as a reputed organization.

Products & Services Singapore Airlines has always been in the forefront of providing high quality & service on aboard all its flights and has created a unique selling proposition around this aspect. Singapore Airline has also been recognized by the international community in its achievements and has received many accolades acknowledging that fact, 1) AsiaOne Peoples Choice Awards 2010 (Singapore) Best Full Service Airline 2) Centurion Magazine Readers Choice 2010 (Magazine from American Express - Europe, Middle East, Asia, Pacific) Top favourite airline in First and Business class and Overall Service 3) Global Traveler (USA) Best Airline in the World 2010 (7th consecutive year) 4) Business Traveller Middle East Award Best Asian Airline Serving the Middle East (10th consecutive year)

11

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

3.0 How does Singapore Airlines currently manage its Corporate Reputation? Having a positive reputation could be taken as a key element that helps define Singapore Airlines from its competitors. This helps attract and retain good staff, business partners and allies. Hence Singapore Airlines has taken steps to enhance its corporate reputation by engaging themselves in strong branding acitivites, employee & customer feedback as well as environmentally friendly activities. Questionnaire. In reference to the results to the questioner (Appendix 1) carried out amongst a selected group of participants who have experienced Singapore Airlines we find that a majority of consumers find Singapore Airlines to be a good service provider with an excellent product & great CSR. This fact would help us gain a better understanding how corporate reputation has played a role in improving the corporates standing amongst the consumers. Environmental Activities. Climate change has been a growing issue in the airline industry with CO2 emissions being approximately 2% of the global emissions. Singapore Airlines hence looks to adhere to the highest environmental standards in order to minimize the pollution to the environment. Singapore Airlines also actively practices ISO 14001 environmental standards and has established an Environmental Management System. (EMS). Environmental Management system Singapore Airlines has ensured that all processors, products and services have a minimum impact on the environment. Cleaner & Efficient Aircrafts Singapore Airlines maintains one of the youngest fleets in the world with an average age of 6 years and 4 months. Efforts have been made to reduce sound pollution Purchasing & operating more fuel efficient aircrafts. Planning routes that are more cost affective. Supporting the International Air Transport Commitment to achieve carbon neutral growth by pledging to reduce absolute carbon emissions by 50% in the year 2050.

12

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Waste reduction & Recycling Recycling programmes have been implemented for substances such as waste cooking oil, used paper, cans, glass bottles & scrap metals. Water treatment plants process chemical waste generated from the aircraft maintenance section. All annual reports, newsletters, safety cards, and most promotional material are printed on recycled paper to reduce wastage. Singapore Airlines also adopts green building designs at the workplace to reduce energy usage.

Primary Branding Activities Singapore Girl Singapore Airlines has built a strong reputation based on its superior brand value & brand promise. This is manly attributed to its signature feature the charismatic Singapore Girl which has been transformed into an iconic feature renowned the world over. The famous batik sarong kabaya is instantly recognized & associated with Singapore Airlines warm & friendly service. This iconic feature was created in 1972 at the inception of Singapore Airlines itself and has carried through the ages to be the best brand feature the company has to offer. This global icon even earned a place at the famous Madame Tussauds waxwork museum in London in the year 1993. It was placed there to reflect the popularity of international air travel as well as to commemorate the Airlines & the Singapore Girls 21 st Birthday. All cabin crew who adorn this attire must undergo a rigorous 15-week training followed by many refresher & product courses thought their careers to follow.

13

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

4.0 How Singapore Airlines should improve its Corporate Reputation. Reputation is the strongest determinant of any corporations sustainability. Stock prices can always comeback. Business strategies can always be changed. But when an organizations reputation is gravely injured its recovery is difficult, long term, and uncertain. A risk to reputation is a threat to the survival of the enterprise. Firestein Peter J. (2006) Singapore Airlines does not have the ability to control its reputation but it has the ability to influence it either positively or negatively hence there are many areas the organization needs to consider as important when managing corporate reputation. Any consideration for improvement in corporate reputation would come at a financial cost as well as have serious implications to human resources. In order to ensure continuous improvement process involving corporate reputation I recommend the following strategies to be undertaken to ensure success, 1) Singapore Airlines adopts a Triple Bottom Line strategy to its marketing plan. 2) Singapore Airlines adopt a formal reputation management process as illustrated by Fombrun.

Singapore Airlines & the Triple Bottom Line. As per Michael Bloch (2010), Triple Bottom line (TBL) is an accepted way for business to demonstrate they have sustainable growth. Singapore Airlines should also take serous consideration into actively exercising the elements of TBL in order to sustain & increase its already powerful reputation as a leader in the aviation industry. People Singapore Airlines should remember that when they consider people this refers to the community as well as the employees. Since both parties play an integral part in building corporate reputation as illustrated in the points before. - Employees The staff plays a vital role in corporate reputation since they act as representatives of the brand hence all employees should be well trained, healthy, and knowledgeable & motivated in order to reap maximum benefits. Hence I recommend the following, * Annual training programmes are made mandatory for all staff with reference to their respective fields of expertise. * Annual health checks should be made mandatory in order to minimize staff absenteeism. * Brainstorming sessions & staff suggestions should be welcomed & incentives offered in order to help in self-improvement.

14

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

- Community The community should also be considered when Singapore Airlines changes its action plans. Regular CSR projects should be encouraged both from the parent company as well as the foreign stations in order to help the local communities in each designated country of city. Contributing free tickets to charitable organizations or underprivileged children. Sponsoring local charitable events. Even sponsoring a local Sporting team or association can be identified as good CSR. All of the above mentioned activities will cost the company a considerable portion of money which will of course reduce the Nett profits in the short term. This however will have a positive impact on the bottom line in the years to come. Budgets for CSR should be increased & allocated to each station annually.

Planet Singapore Airlines as mentioned above is already heavily involved in processors & activities that help reduce the damage of pollution & waste to the environment. However there is always room for improvement. Hence I recommend the following, Singapore Airlines should ensure all lighting products used especially on board the aircrafts are made of recyclable material & consume less amounts of power rather than the conventional. As per current practice Singapore Airlines should continue to purchase aircrafts that are more fuel economical consistently & ensure all routes are planned in accordance to the most fuel-efficient routing. All polythene products used should be made of the biodegradable version rather than the cheaper generic type. The proposed changes would have a direct effect on the long term as well as short term expense of the company but could be seen as necessary for the future. Such actions may upset certain regular suppliers & even force exiting employees be resistant to these changes however this is expected & should be tackled tactfully emphasizing on the benefits it brings rather than focus on the work load at hand.

15

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Profits With the end of the global recession & the rise of the Asian super powers (China & India) in the recent past, Singapore Airlines can hope to find an increase in demand for air traffic in this region. However it will not be easy to benefit from this phenomenon since competitors have also identified the potential in the region & have started their own individual bids to secure the surplus of consumers. In light of these changes the consumers to have changed their focus to increasing their frequency of travel & decreasing the per transaction cost this action has opened the flood gates for budget airlines to eat away at market share of the bigger players. In order to be competitive it is advisable Singapore Airlines consider having a Budget Airline to support its primary airlines activities & reap the maximum benefits from this market.

Reputation Management process In order to help facilitate the above mentioned TBL strategy it is important that Singapore Airlines has its own process to ensure things are done properly, for this purpose we will use Fombruns reputation management process

Identity Research

Stakeholder Audit

Reputation Management Team

Corporate Communication & PR campaigns

Monitoring & control

Graph 3.0 Identity Research This would help identify the answers to three basic questions Singapore Airlines will have to ask itself, Who are we? A company that is in the Commercial airline industry providing friendly & superior service. What do we stand for? A company that provides high quality products & services profitably. What do we want to stand for? A company that provides high quality products & services ethically with a minimum impact to the environment.

16

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Stakeholder Audit Singapore Airlines should carry out audits amongst its various stakeholders in order to gain knowledge on how the different stakeholders perceive the companies reputation. This could be achieved through research methods such as, Focus groups One-on-one interviews Mystery shopping exercises Questionnaires (as mentioned before in appendix 1) Such activities could be conducted amongst its employees, suppliers, management & customers.

Reputation Management Team A team should be formed in order to streamline this process the responsibilities have been highlighted in the table below,

Responsibility Managing overall strategy & control Senior Vice President Public Ensuring all health, safety & legal regulations are met Relations Ensuring communication of corporate reputation is done both internally & externally Corporate Reputation & Public Affairs Manager PR Managers Graph 4.0 Effective communication of CSR activities, financial performances to the media Managing crisis communication Delivering corporate communication information internally to foreign stations Ensuring corporate communication is communicated clearly to local media Ensuring CSR activities are in accordance of the Parent companies intentions

Designation

17

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Corporate Communications & PR campaign As per current practice all internal communications mediums such as memos, posters, intranet news bulletins should be further strengthened along with staff appraisals & awards to promote customer service. All external communication should be streamlined through the respective stations PR managers on approval from the Public affairs department of the company. Major announcements should be reviewed by the Senior Vice President for Public relations prior to commercial release. All PR campaigns should have full media coverage where possible in order to highlight the companies CSR skills. All employees should also have the chance to participate in campaigns and this should be encouraged within the management. Control & Management Corporate Reputation meetings should be held ever 3 months with reference to the whole network. The following factors should be discussed, Review Group Performance Reputation activities New Opportunities Internal controls Human resource development

Allocation of resources such as, Human resources - Relevant persons & adequate training should be allocated

Financial resources - Budget allocation should be made annually and spread across each quarter for all stations including Head office

18

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) Singapore Airlines should adopt a scorecard of sorts with the below mentioned Key Performance Indicators in order to establish how well the reputation management system works,

Key Performance Indicators Target Performance Actual Performance Increased revenue & profit Excellent (A) Excellent (B) Good (C) Poor margins Corporate Reputation Exposure Excellent (A) Excellent (B) Good (C) Poor level Customer Service Feedback Stakeholder Support Load factors (Network as a whole) Graph 5.0 Excellent Excellent Excellent (A) Excellent (B) Good (C) Poor (A) Excellent (B) Good (C) Poor (A) Excellent (B) Good (C) Poor

An increase in all the Key factors mentioned above is what is required and the targets set are very steep however Singapore Airlines being the charismatic go getter organization it is should set itself high standards in order to ensure Corporate reputation is of its highest possible standards.

19

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

References -

Fombrun, C. J. and C. van Riel (2004), Fame & Fortune, How Successful Companies Build Winning Reputations. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.
Genasi, C. (2001). Can you spin a reputation? Business Communicator Lines, V. L. (2004). Corporate reputation in Asia: Looking beyond bottom-line performance. Journal of Communication Management Marken, G.A. (2004). Reputation management starts at home: One day at a time. Public Relations Quarterly Van Riel, C.B.M. (1995), Principles of Corporate Communication, Prentice-Hall, Hemel Hempstead. www.singaporeair.com.sg

- Corporate Reputation: 12 Steps to Safeguarding and Recovering Reputation by Leslie Gaines-Ross (Hardcover - Jan 2, 2008) - Essentials of Corporate Communication: Implementing Practices for Effective Reputation Management by Cees B.M. Van Riel and Charles J. Fombrun (Apr 17, 2007) - Creating Corporate Reputations by Grahame R. Dowling (Jun 15, 2002) - Revealing the Corporation: Perspectives on Identity, Image, Reputation, Corporate Branding and Corporate Level Marketing by John Balmer and Stephen Greyser (May 16, 2003) - Balmer, J.M.T, (1995), "Corporate branding and connoisseurship", Journal of Management, Vol 21. - Accounting for Corporate Reputation by Ahmed Riahi-Belkaoui and Ellen L. Pavlik (Aug 30, 1992)

20

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

IMPORTANCE OF CORPORATE COMMUNICATION TO CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY ACTIVITIES OF SINGAPORE AIRLINES

MANAGING CORPORATE REPUTATION CANDIDATE NUMBER: 10884942 TASK TWO WORD COUNT: 2086 DECEMBER 11

21

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Executive Summary The following is a case study, which aims to outline the importance of Corporate Social Responsibility in the modern day business environment. Singapore Airlines has been used as an example of an organization in order to illustrate this fact. We firstly would discuss the importance of CSR & the benefits that are gained from having a good CSR strategy. We then see how Singapore Airlines current approach is in regards to this fact along with its pros & cons. We then delve deeper into the recommendations for Singapore Airlines to practice do in order to improve its communications of CSR activities. Finally we take a closer look at the financial as well as political implications of the afore mentioned recommendations.

22

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Case study Corporate Social Responsibility 1.0 Introduction The following is a brief case study on Corporate Social Responsibility based on Singapore Airlines. Singapore Airlines is a leading player in the commercial aviation market, which caters to a wide spectrum of consumers across the global. It has also been an active participant in CSR campaigns both locally as well as internationally owing to its global presence. This case study illustrates the importance of CSR and the methods in which it has been practiced b Singapore Airlines & the necessary steps that should be undertaken in order to improve them. 2.0 Why should corporates look to do CSR activities? In recent times Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has turned out to be a vital strategy to adopt in order for companies to survive the ruthless market conditions. Many companies have been seen to benefit by adding CSR to their bottom lines. 1.1 Main features of CSR, 1) CSR is a behavior of business & is not legally required it is voluntarily adopted by organizations for long-term benefits. 2) CSR is directly linked to sustainable development; businesses need to integrate the economic, social & environmental impacts of their business. 3) CSR is not an addition to the core business activities but rather a way in which the business will be managed. 2.1 We must also not forget the various benefits of CSR activities by organizations, Reduced risks Reduction of wastage Improved relations with pressure groups Increased brand equity Improved relations with employees Increase corporate reputation

23

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

3.0 Why Communicate Corporate Social Responsibility? Corporate Social Responsibility is seen as an activity necessary in modern day business to be identified as sustainable corporation. Engaging in and communicating such activities carry many benefits as mentioned above. Primarily it is focused on increasing the organizations corporate reputation & brand equity it inadvertently helps increase shareholder equity & employee motivation in the process. All these elements are positive & contribute positively to the bottom line. Hence CSR has a direct impact both on the financial & human aspect of the organization. Corporate Communication Strategies. Primary corporate communication strategies would include, PR campaigns Sponsorships Endorsements Internal marketing We will now take each of the above-mentioned elements and see how they have been illustrated through Singapore Airlines. PR campaigns Public relations campaigns would generally be focused on non-profit as well as charitable organizations. Engaging in such campaigns help uplift the corporates reputation as well as increase shareholder value & brand equity. For example Singapore Airlines in Sri Lanka donated an air conditioning unit to the Lady Ridge way Childrens hospital as a part of their CSR activities in June 2010. Singapore Airlines Cabin Crew Club for Community Care or 5Cs which was founded in 2001, organizes various activities and outings for residents of the Asian Womens Welfare Association (AWWA) community home.

Sponsorships Singapore Airlines has been the proud to be the host of the Singapore Airlines International Cup horse race, which was established in the year 2000. It provides an annual membership of over SGD 3 million for this prestiges event, which is now a recognized global event with international participation. Singapore airlines have also been instrumental in providing free air travel to National Day parade organizing committee members as well.

24

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Endorsements Singapore Airlines has pride it self on being an organization which firmly believes in contributing to the education & crafts of the country. As an initiative towards this commitment Singapore airlines has offered rebated air tickets to the Singapore Sports School to help nurture emerging sports men & women to gain valuable exposure to the International arena. Singapore Airlines has also had very strong associations to the arts by showing its support to the Singapore Symphony Orchestra, Singapore Lyric Opera and many more organizations in the arts community. Internal Marketing. Singapore Airlines has also many internal marketing activities that help in CSR, such as annual medical check ups for all its employees are been carried out at the expense of the company in a bid to ensure the health of its valued employees. This helps motivate the employees and gives them more re assurance about their organization. Singapore Airlines been an ethical company has also encouraged employees to form their own trade unions Eg: Cabin crew trade union. Such unions help establish valuable feedback and communication between the employees and the management. Annual Sports get together are also organized in a bid to encourage fellowship & team orientation into the employees. 4.0 Communication of CSR activities. CSR activities of the company should be communicated to its consumers, employees, stakeholders, the community, suppliers & government. Since this features a cross section of stakeholders it is important that dedicated methods of communication are used to address each of these elements. Singapore Airlines would have an internal communication method as well as an external communication method to tackle both parties. Internal communication. Method Singapore Airlines has established a very strong intranet with a wealth of knowledge for the benefit of its internal stakeholders. From the front line employees right up to the CEO has been granted access to this portal of information. Important updates on information pertaining to changes, additions, improvements to the company is uploaded for the benefit of all staff. Internal Memos or mail circulars also provide valuable information on CSR activities undertaken by the company. In some instances such communication is done on a local level depending on where the CSR activities are taking place.

25

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Eg: In Sri Lanka the PR manager would be responsible for communicating the CSR activities undertaken by the local station and would in turn be informing the Head office of its progress. A monthly internal periodical called the Outlook is published which carries information on such activities as well. This is distributed throughout the whole route network. This acts as a company newsletter. Control Measures All corporate communication with regards to the CSR activities undertaken by Singapore Airlines Head office is communicated via the Public Affairs Department of Singapore Airlines. Most foreign stations would first seek permission & approval from this department prior to engaging themselves in any CSR activities. Drawbacks Even though the above method seems to suit the airline well there seem to be some fundamental flaws in the system. Full disclosure of information is rarely done with regards to the CSR activities. Total costs of CSR activities and the budgets for such activities are disclosed to a limited level of management. Information overload as well as extensive illustrations of the CSR activities would discourage employees from making an effort to read them. Staff ideas for CSR activities do not seem to be communicated to the senior management. The general format of the intranet does not catch the attention of employees to be enthusiastic enough to check the information provided by it.

External Communication Method When the organization wishes to pass on its CSR communications to the outside world it adopts many different methods of Media, EDMs Direct mailers to priority passengers are sent through a central database in Singapore to which information on its contacts is provided for & updated by the local stations. Each station has ts own database. Website The official website would also carry major CSR activities undertaken by the Head office in its webpages.

26

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Press (Papers/Magazines) Local daily papers would be the most popular means by which CSR activities of the company would be published many local stations would hold press briefings in order to educate the media on its activities & even invite some of them to witness these activities first hand. Insertions & articles on CSR activities can be seen in many local as well as international travel trade magazines such as Travtalk in Sri Lanka would also carry information on these activities. Annual Report The annual report would publish the CSR activities undertaken by Singapore Airlines Head office during the relevant financial year. As you might have noticed Singapore Airlines has looked to adopt a more online oriented form of communication as opposed to the conventional methods. This is due to a growing trend for most stakeholders to be tech savvy and opting to use the Internet as its primary supplier of information & communication. Hence in keeping with these changing tomes Singapore Airlines has also embraced this change and moved to been more Internet based. Control Measures As in the internal communication the Public relations department would be responsible for the communications sent to the stakeholders. However since Singapore Airlines is a global organization certain degree of communication could be disserminated by the General Managers and PR managers of the foreign stations. This however should first be cleared in order to ensure it meets with required standards. Drawbacks A major drawback could be identified that the communication to its Priority passengers is done by the Head office in Singapore & requires a lot of bureaucratic red tape prior to its release. This may result in delays for the potential consumers to receive the message. It may also confuse the consumer when the communication is received from Singapore as opposed to its local country of origin. CSR activities communicated are primarily of the cause related in nature and the airline does not focus on the employees, suppliers or other stakeholders. The methods used to promote CSR though modern in nature fail to give the adequate exposure required for this activity since it focuses its attention primarily on mediums that are already associated with other aspects of the organization. The intended message could be lost amongst the other elements communicated by the airline. Eg: The company website is primarily used to promote the sales of tickets by the airline. Hence communication of other activities may confuse the consumer.

27

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

5.0 How should Singapore Airlines Improve Its Corporate Communications? In order to illustrate the above point we will be dividing the Corporate Communications once again between, Internal Aspect External Aspect Internal Aspect It should be made practice that full disclosure of information pertaining to the CSR activity is made common knowledge amongst the employees. A forum should be allocated on the Intranet to encourage employees to suggest methods/activities for CSR activities the best 3 suggestions every year should be recognized and rewarded. The communication should be formulated in an easy to read format with less clutter to avoid the message being misconstrued by additional information. All staff members should be trained in Transforming customer service aspect in order to help better communicate the CSR image of the organization. External Aspect More focus and attention should be given at the traditional methods of communication such as print & electronic media since a subset of consumers still rely on these conventional methods of communication. Search engine optimization is another method by which Singapore Airlines would be able to promote its corporate reputation by highlighting its CSR activities further on the internet. All communications to the respective countries Priority passengers should be handled and executed by the local station and authority for this should be handed to the respective stations General Managers.

28

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

6.0 Financial & Human Resource Requirement. The changes recommended will be met by imminent obstacles with regards to, Financial Human Capital Financial Increasing the media output for CSR activities would mean an increase in the cost for advertising & promotion, which would have a direct impact on the sales budgets. Conducting an annual appraisal for the staff and other staff benefits would incur the company additional expenses and they may require seeking 3rd party assistance to facilitate such activity. Training for employees to be better ambassadors of CSR would require funding as well as skilled persons, which will come at a cost.

Human Capital There is a price to pay with regards to the Human capital involvement as well. There maybe a subsection of employees who will be against such change & they would require persuasion by the management hence a change management team would have to be established within the organization to counter this issue. Increasing the team strength of the Public Affairs department will be vital so as to ensure they would be better equipped to handle CSR communications more diligently. Making customized communications would require creative teams to be appointed in order for execution of the message to be done smoothly. This would mean recruiting skilled employees for this purpose.

It is my opinion that if the above-mentioned changes are addressed Singapore Airlines will be able to reap the maximum benefits of its CSR campaign & ensure it contributes to the increase of its corporate reputation.

29

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

REFERNCES: - Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility: Stakeholders in a Global Environment by William B. Werther and David B. Chandler (Apr 28, 2010) - Harvard Business Review on Corporate Responsibility (Harvard Business Review Paperback Series) by Harvard Business School Press, C. K. Prahalad and Michael E. Porter (Jul 10, 2003) - Just Good Business: The Strategic Guide to Aligning Corporate Responsibility and Brand by Kellie A. McElhaney (Nov 1, 2008) - Managing Corporate Social Responsibility: A Communication Approach by W. Timothy Coombs and Sherry J. Holladay (Oct 11, 2011) - When Principles Pay: Corporate Social Responsibility and the Bottom Line (Columbia Business School Publishing) by G. M. Heal (Mar 26, 2008) - http://www.singaporeair.com/en_UK/about-us/ - CSR activities at SQ - Corporate Social Responsibility: An Ethical Approach (Broadview Guides to Business and Professional Ethics) by Mark S. Schwartz (Mar 22, 2011) - Corporate Social Responsibility: Doing the Most Good for Your Company and Your Cause Phillip kotler & Nancy Lee December 2004 - Corporate Social Responsibility in India: Past, Present And Future : Author: Sanjay Kumar Panda Year: 2008 - Managing Corporate Social Responsibility: A Communication Approach by W. Timothy Coombs and Sherry J. Holladay (Oct 11, 2011) - New Strategies for Reputation Management: Gaining Control of Issues, Crises and Corporate Social Responsibility by Andrew Griffin (Paperback - Oct 28, 2009)

30

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Appendix 1 Singapore Airlines.


History Singapore Airlines birth could be dated back to the 1 of May 1947 when it was known as Malayan Air and it took to the skies for the very first time. The inaugural flight was from Kallang Airport in Singapore to Kuala Lumpur. This was the start of a 3 flight week serving Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh and Penang. Over the coming years the airline grew in confidence and size expanding its operations to destinations such as Indonesia, Vietnam, Burma and even North Borneo to name a few. On the 16th of September 1963 the federation of Malaysia was formed and the airline was known as Malaysia-Singapore Airlines (MSA). In the year 1968 the annual revenue rose to SGD 100 million this also signified the introduction of the Sarong Kebaya uniform for the Singapore Girl. In the year 1972 MSA split to create to entities Singapore Airlines was established during this year. This sparked a tremendous drive for expansion and improvement within the new company. This also meant more aircrafts were required hence the fleet included Boeing 747s and 727s to cater to the growing demand. Singapore airlines in the year 1989 were the first airline to operate a Boeing 747-400 aircraft across the pacific and signaled the start for many milestones that were achieved by the airline. In the year 2004 Singapore Airlines achieved another milestone by setting a world record for the longest non stop commercial flight from Singapore-Los Angeles. In year 2007 Singapore Airlines was also the first airline to operate the Airbus A380 on a commercial flight and this was to Sydney. Subsidiaries Singapore Airlines have also been successful in establishing over 20 subsidiaries in its tenure. The main subsidiaries would be, SIA Cargo Is a profitable subsidiary dealing with cargo requirements across its route network. SIA Engineering Company Is mainly in charge of the servicing and maintenance of the fleet as well as retro fitting seating as per requirements. Silk Air- Operates as a fully owned subsidiary and works completely independently to Singapore Airlines. Tradewinds Is identified as the travel arm of the company and offers attractive hotel rates to travel partners around the world. Special Achievments & Accolades

31

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Awards & Accolades seem to be a part of life for Singapore Airlines since they constantly strive for excellence & superor quality in all aspects of the company, examples of their more recent achievements would be, Singapore Corporate Awards 2011 Organized by Business Times Singapore Gold Best Investor Relations award TravelAge West (USA) 2011 Wave Awards Best Airline, International (5th consecutive year) AsiaOne Peoples Choice Awards 2010 (Singapore) Best Full Service Airline Wanderlust Travel Award 2011 (UK) Top Worldwide Airline (4th consecutive year, 9th time in the Award's ten year history)

And the list goes on & on through the years past and they hope to increase this impressive tally in the near future as well.
Singapore Airlines at present boast a staff in excess of 13000 serving customers across the globe in over 70 cities in 35 countries. It also bolsters a fleet of over 100 aircrafts & is proud to have the youngest fleet in the industry with the average age of an airplane been maintained at 6 years. Maintaining this impressive feat is no easy task hence having a good corporate reputation is of utmost importance to the airline.

32

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Appendix 2 Questioner to measure Corporate Reputation of Singapore Airlines 1) To what extent do you trust the airline? ( ) Completely ( ) To a larger extent ( ) Fairly ( ) Limited

2) How honest do you think Singapore Airlines is to its consumers? ( ) Completely ( ) To a larger extent ( ) Fairly ( ) Limited

3) Are the products & services offered by Singapore Airlines reliable? ( ) Yes ( ) No

4) Is the customer service effective? ( ) Strongly Agree ( ) Agree ( ) Neutral ( ) Disagree ( ) Strongly Disagree

5) Are the products & services offered by Singapore Airlines Fairly Prices? ( ) Yes ( ) Somewhat ( ) No 6) Does Singapore Airlines give back to the community? ( ) Yes ( ) Somewhat ( ) No 7) Would you recommend Singapore Airlines services to a friend? ( ) Yes ( ) Maybe ( ) No

Thank you for your Cooperation

33

Managing Corporate Reputation

Index Number 10884942

Appendix 3

Singapore Airlines Group Analyst/Media Briefing Half year & 2nd Quarter FY2011/12 Results 4th November 2011 (Slide show source www.singaporeair.com.sg)

34