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Product benchmarking in the air cargo industry: Non-parametric measurement of an aircraft value for money

Corrado lo Storto (University of Naples Federico II, Naples, Italy)

Benchmarking: An International Journal

ISSN: 1463-5771

Article publication date: 2 May 2017

705

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present an objective decision-making framework and conduct a benchmarking study in the air cargo industry.

Design/methodology/approach

The decision-making framework and benchmarking methodology evaluates the aircraft value for money (VfM) as a benefit-to-cost ratio calculated adopting a measure of relative efficiency. This efficiency score is measured as a comprehensive efficiency index obtained by combining several efficiency scores calculated by implementing four data envelopment analysis (DEA) models.

Findings

The framework is used to carry on a benchmarking study in the air cargo industry on a sample of 27 airplanes. The average VfM is 67.04 percent, with measurements between 39.96 and 116.03 percent. Only three airplanes achieve full VfM and behave as benchmarks to the remaining airplanes. Boeing B727-200 is a broad player in the market. Some old cargo models (DC 9-30F) deliver the same amount of VfM as more recent aircraft models (i.e. MD-11F and A300-600F).

Research limitations/implications

The decision-making framework and benchmarking methodology can usefully support managers to make sound decisions and plans. Even though DEA generates attributes weights to different alternatives that are independent of the buyer preferences, the framework flexibility allows introducing a weighting scheme to take into account the managers preferences for certain aircraft performance/functional features. It can easily include new functional/performance measurements and adapt the VfM measurement to the particular economic context, strategy, and business model of the airlines, or be transferred to different industries.

Originality/value

The framework combines technical, functional performance, and economic cost measurements to get a unique efficiency index to evaluate the airplane VfM.

Keywords

Citation

lo Storto, C. (2017), "Product benchmarking in the air cargo industry: Non-parametric measurement of an aircraft value for money", Benchmarking: An International Journal, Vol. 24 No. 4, pp. 857-881. https://doi.org/10.1108/BIJ-06-2016-0086

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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