The Emirates Group company is located in Dubai, UAE. It is a holding company which deals specifically with aviation, with its headquarters in Garhoud, Dubai in the Dubai International Airport. The Emirates Group has two companies. DNATA (Dubai National Air Transport) deals with aviation services. It provides and handles ground services at 17 different airports in the Middle East. The other company, the Emirates Airline, deals with flights all over the world with more than 130 flights across all the continents. It is the largest airline in the Middle East, with more than 170 aircrafts and a capital base of about 58 billion US dollars. The Group has more than 63,000 employees across its firms and affiliates across the world with an annual turnover of about 18 billion dollars. The Government of Dubai owns the Emirates Group, one of largest employers in the region which under the umbrella of the Dubai Investment Corporation. Since its establishment over 50 years ago, the group has overcome many challenges. Quality assessment of the group assists in mapping its internal and external development stages.
Quality assessment involves a detailed examination of several aspects of a company. One of the main aspects of assessment is the set of standards. This is to assess the extent to which the company has achieved its objectives by conforming to specific standards. The management, shareholders and other stakeholders are able to see commitment of the company to quality conformance as well as conducting daily practices. The other important aspect of focus is the code of ethics. These are the ethical guidelines that the company or the regulating authority has put in place to guide its operations. Through quality assessment, all the stakeholder groups have a chance to scrutinize the company compliance to the code of ethics. Internal auditors in a company ensure that the company is on the path of success by maintaining proper records for all their operations. Auditors correct and advice the company on its financial and management accounting as well as hedging risks during operations. They are also are able to detect frauds, ensure data security as well as identify appropriate administration tools. Quality assessment examines the roles of internal auditors in an organization. It shows their efficiency as well as effectiveness towards their activities. Quality assessment also gives the image of the business as well as showing the opportunities that the company has for performance improvement. This is through evaluation of organizational culture and behavior to show whether the organization is on the path of success. Quality assessment also encompasses the use of practice advisories to assist in management and administration (Gorgenlender, 2010).
The reason of assessment is explained by the desire to establish the current state of conformance to the standards of good business delivery. Quality assessment also builds confidence for all stakeholders because it reinforces and eventually shows commitment of the managers in the company to build practices. It is also a move to attract consumers in the long run. It is a tool that stakeholders use to ensure that the business achieves its objectives by observing all the necessary characteristics especially for the auditors. Quality assessment for the Emirates Group reveals that the business has laid down organizational structure which is responsible for the company status, both economically and in the public sense by showing the public the image that the company has created over time in its region of operation, in this case the Middle East. The Emirates Group has been a major competitor in the airline business not only in the country but also internationally for the last 26 years. The most obvious point to begin when formulating quality assessment for any enterprise is to check whether it has conformed to standards It shows the extent to which the company is dedicated to its responsibilities on a global scale to remain on a competitive edge.. It is also the key to determining whether the company will continue being successful with universal appreciation by all the stakeholder groups. Each company provides its visions and values, which guide it to the level of standards it aims at achieving. Emirates Group vision and values are to make decisions led by a stable and strong leadership which will support ground-breaking ideas for the airline industry. The group also aims at following the set business ethics for the airline industry. It also aims at caring for all its stakeholders, employees and customers as well as for the environment and communities where it operates. A quality assessment looks at whether the company has conformed to the right standards to achieve this (Broman, 2009).
Assessment of the company conformance to the standards follows the guidelines laid down during the past twenty six years. They have enabled the company to see to it that it complies with the set conformance standards, which partially explains the company success. The standards set have included adding value to the stakeholders wealth which is met by going beyond customer expectations. This has been achieved with time, with the introduction of new air buses which are world class. The company has also been in the frontline in ensuring efficiency and introducing new technology so as to maintain the highest possible standards for the airline industry. One of the main standards for any airline industry in the world is to ensure customer safety. To enable this, airlines must cooperate with international security organizations to identify potential rioters and criminals, and prevent dangerous incidents. Therefore, the Emirates Group works together with the major security and intelligence organizations across the globe to ensure that all their customers are safe. It explains why there are minimal security incidents in the airports that as well as in airplanes. The Emirates Group has also shown conformity to customer comfort standards. They have achieved this through changing their aircrafts to accommodate new models in the market which enhance comfort during flights. These include the Boeing 77 which has a larger number of seats and a large cargo space (Hashim, 2010).
Other standards that each airline company should conform to are good working conditions and remuneration for its employees. These ensure that the employee population is highly motivated. Consequently, it translates directly to the attitudes of employees towards the customers as well as teamwork in the workplace. At the moment, the Emirates Group has more than 62,000 workers across the globe. It is the largest employer in the United Arabs Emirates as well as one of the largest airline employers in the world. Most of the employees live away from their families in foreign lands. Others, such as pilots and cabin crews, travel to more than five countries in one week. There are unions for airline workers that ensure the employer’s conformance to standards. According to reports from these unions, the group has not had any major problems with the employees. The group appreciates the role of every member of the staff and their commitment towards maintenance of competitiveness as well as improvements of global operations. In order to show this appreciation, it has put in place performance appraisal mechanisms to reward the best employees. It has also sought the services of the best hotels in the world to accommodate its pilots and flying crews. Through tight security procedures, the group protects its employees especially those who fly to countries with a history of insecurity. Employees also report that the Emirates Group show fairness in treating junior employees with fair supervision, training programs, rigid contracts and benefits for the employees’ families. The group also invests billions of dollars in promoting creative and innovative ideas that employees might have to support its growth and development in the global markets. For the last two decades, the group has been among the best airlines in the world to conform to employee standards. It has created a healthy working environment with good working conditions for all employees. With job satisfaction, job performance increases, thus, leading to faster achievement of goals and objectives. It also has welfare programs for all employees to cover injuries or illnesses during work. It has created its workplace as a family where employees have reported to good living standards both due to hefty remuneration as well as appropriate welfare programs (Hashim, 2010).
Globalization has given rise to competitiveness in a global scale. To deal with international competition, international airlines have come to embrace technology with new efficient models. These models come with both their advantages and disadvantages. In order to regulate the extent to which each airline applies technology, national as well as international airline operators have put in place specific standards that each company should comply with. These standards control safety and efficiency of each model that airlines tend to use. The airline must present each airbus or mode of technology it seeks to apply to airline regulatory agencies across the world in regions where it operates. These airlines must vet the quality conformance of the new models and technologies before approving them for use in a certain area. The Emirates Group has presented different models it wants to use in the Middle East, The Persian Gulf, Europe, North and South America, Africa and the rest of Asia. Regulatory agencies across the globe appreciate the group conformance to their standards with commendations from major airline regulators such as the FAA of the United States of America. Through this conformance, the company has influenced other airlines to apply their models and standards which include the Abu Dhabi, Virgin Atlantic and United Airlines among others. Such standards include the age of the fleet. The Emirates Group has one among the youngest fleets in the world with an average operation period of six years. There are specific ages of fleets according to specific regulators. However, the Emirates have conformed to all of them in a global perspective. Regulators also demand for flight operations which are efficient and timely. The company has the most timely schedules and avoids unnecessary delays. They also save emission and fuels according to the latest environmental regulations for aircrafts. Few countries have complained about the airline environmental conservations. In general, one can conclude that the Emirate Group conformance of standards from the quality assessment is high (Hellyer & Environment Agency — Abu Dhabi, 2005).
The other focus when it comes to quality assessment is a look at the internal audit of a particular company. Internal audits are also main aspects of quality assessment, because they ensure the role of management in commitment to quality. Internal audits are also important tools for risk management and governance for any company in the world. They give a clear picture of the company financial positions by evaluating books of accounts. They confirm that different departments report the actual financial and management accounts. They also report to the board of any fraudulent activities and protect vital data for the business. In the past, internal audits within the Emirates Group have faced several hitches. However, the group has been able to successfully manage them. The move to reduce these hitches significantly with time explains the company ability to get quality and accurate data and information. The information advices the company prompt action taking. Efficiency that internal auditors grant or assure in an organization explains the speed at which relevant information is relayed to the relevant desks for action. The senior auditor in the company observes that after reporting his findings his recommendations are acted upon within relevant time frames. He also ensures that the recommendations and implementation processes have a tremendous positive change in the company balance sheet. The Emirates Group has implemented different changes in the internal auditing division since its establishment. However, it has managed to maintain a balance sheet that has been liquid in more than ten past years.
The efforts of the Emirates Group have assisted the company to ensure that it reports the relevant information in time. However, the quality assessment reviews that the group should evaluate the internal audit division with a global perspective. The Emirates Group has focused specifically on its operations in major regions with relevant reports about regions such as the Middle East and the Persian Gulf. The audit reports should give conclusive data to support the market changes and dynamic characteristics of the market. This is by giving special financial and management accounts as well as ratios showing how the company adapts to different changes such as seasons, preferences, income changes as well as regions. In regions such as Africa, internal audits should show the specific characteristics about the market. A quality assessment of internal audit from specific regions does not show reasons for specific markets. For example, they only show that for specific markets in Africa, fewer people are using the airbuses that the airline provides other than ones from their own countries. The point is to provide affordable air travel solution for them and (or) their commodities without compromising quality. The internal auditors in these regions focus entirely on financial reports and leave out the administration part. In real sense, internal auditors are investment advisers to managers in specific departments. They ensure that the company continues on trends to reduce costs and increase revenues. Therefore, the quality assessment shows that they have a long way to go in regions far from the Middle East. The Emirates Group should increase the focus of its IA departments to cover other regions such as Africa or East Asia. It will increase their competitiveness with more detailed IA reports to support their operations. According to characteristics of good auditors, an audit reporting structure should be functional in administration. It should add value to the business and act as the main advising tool. Therefore, the quality assessment shows that the Emirates Group should make efforts as far as deriving solutions for business challenges is concerned (Hanadisa, 2013).
Internal auditors should use technological methods to support their operations through incorporation of new systems which support reporting methods of the department. The Emirates Group has shown tremendous developments in internal audit divisions. Using the most appropriate technology allows to combine financial records from different departments and create a centralized system. However, there are no limits as far as products and series are concerned. The group still has to apply technological improvement procedures to improve its internal audit divisions. The image of the company will befit highly from the investment discussed above. Quicker ways of receiving, dissecting and analyzing information are availed by new information technology systems, which ensures that what needs actions is availed to the information of the relevant offices in time. As expressed by the board, the executive management and the operational management, expectations of the internal auditor are in the process of full implementation. It means that the three above have reported up to 79% on average, the level to which they have attempted to meet the internal auditors repot tabled in 2004.
The assessment advanced to the group of companies and in particular the airline department, established a true spirit of conformance with the standards and the code of ethics, within the business and the IA charter, plan, policies, procedures and applicable laws and regulatory requirements. This has not only improved the consumer report on the services provided by the company but has also improved the company customer tally. This, in its turn, has improved the company preference amongst customers in respect to its competitors. Internal auditors in accompany act in accordance with the code of ethics. This code of ethics dictates the limits of internal auditors in the organizations. One of the main characteristics of internal auditors is that they should not engage in businesses elsewhere. They can also choose the alternative of having a guardian if they engage in a business activity, but the activity must be different from those of the mother company. The Emirates Group vets its internal auditors on a yearly basis to determine whether they conform to the code of ethics. The quality assessment shows that internal auditors from different divisions of the group know and appreciate their code of ethics. According to reports from external auditors from taxing authorities and as appointed by shareholders, internal auditors in the company have made very few errors in accounting for the past decade. They have shown utmost transparency in their activities to support the business in its operations. Through the efforts of the internal audit department, the company has managed to identify risks in the business and input specific measures to mitigate the risks. The auditors have also managed to follow their ethics and report fraudulent activities in time. Consequently, the Emirates Group has managed to avoid such incidences as insider information, obtaining money using fraudulent activities or even whistle-blowing. These activities pose serious problems to public relations of companies, a situation that recently happened with United Airlines in 2008. With observation of the code of ethics, internal auditors in the group have managed to work together with evaluation committees to identify hitches and development opportunities in the department. The quality assessment shows that the company has only one main challenge. The challenge entails seeking support from the management to support all the internal audit resources that they might need for better performance (Broman, 2009).
The senior internal auditor in the Emirates Group is an ex official member of the board and the operational management. It has encouraged transparency even across the departments that do not deal with money directly. It has also ensured that the IA gets a chance to follow up the recommendation he has made in his report. The consequence is that the internal auditor gets the chance to suggest the ways and methods he deemed better for following in implementation of the recommendations. In a nutshell, the auditor provides first hand and only relevant supervision to implementation of the recommendations made by his office. Therefore, this enhances a strong relationship between every two managerial bodies undertaking a similar course. In the end, all the work is geared towards ensuring that the company goals are realized. This simulation and work practice has ensured quicker results. The results have, in turn, more than doubled the profits of the company. The level at which the internal auditor operates in the company, the respect granted to his office and volume of his work load is another clear indication of the company value for his importance and the office he serves in. The company operational management employs management tool which allows for the precise observation of the recommendations from the office of the internal auditor. Upon achievement of one of the recommendations assigned to the office, they are to focus on the next one. This stands to prove that the office of the internal auditor adds much value to the company (McAntyre, 2010).
It is important to note that the mandate of the internal audit will include shifting the balance between assurance and advisory audits in order to ensure that the business remains consistent with its strategic goal change or tolerance of risk. The internal audit activity in the company attracts a deep industry experience. There is a growing trend amongst professionals all over the world requiring that auditors in particular meet this requirement. Company auditor has to incorporate fraud detection and prevention skills into his list of skills. To supplement any unwarranted staffing shortages, the company has arranged on internship programs, availing guest auditors or auditor rotational programs. It also arranges outsourcing or co-sourcing with the third party providers. Like many other companies, the Emirates group hires interns and my purpose to retain the most talented of them. The move to hire guest auditors is advised by the need to gain specialized capabilities. Staff serving in the business audit division is also exposed to learning opportunities from the hired stuff and can act as ambassadors by introducing into their company what they have learnt from the external auditors. Co-sourcing and outsourcing are other options employed by the big company due to possibilities of synergy that is intended as a result of the third part and in-house resources merger. As a result, the department is up-beat with the changing needs and requirements from those directly affected by its operations.
Management tools employed by the company are inclusive of minimal worker supervision principles have gone ahead to give the workers enough room to contemplate the company values something that has helped improve greatly the productivity of the workers in the company. The techniques employed by the company include sourcing the company work force from across the globe have availed a truly great mix of both experience and global orientation. The mix of workers gives the customer the ‘feel at home’, the feeling which further translates to customer satisfaction. The diverse employee base, has ensured the wealth in cultural diversity, experience, academic consultation and comparison which can only breed a high equilibrium when such a group is working towards the attainment of the company goals and objectives.
Therefore, upon the international code of ethics and discipline, the staff at the Emirates complies with the code which ensures that they are bound together not only by their national background differences but also with the company goals and objectives (Gorgenlender, 2010). In a quality assessment, it is important to look at the practice advisories for the Emirates Group. These refer to any other groups that advice the company during its operations. These companies, authorities, organizations and other stakeholders ensure that the company runs smoothly with advice where necessary. The management seeks advice from specific groups as requested by a specific department or through the advice of the chief internal auditor. The board of directors can also decide on the organizations to apply as advisors. There are several topics to discuss when it comes to private advisories. The quality assessment evaluates importance of the advisory groups. It examines the role of each group in the development of the organization. Private advisory as a component of the quality assessment refers to the external environment affecting the Emirates Group. The group cannot survive on its own in the corporate world. There are other organizations with better knowledge and experience in different activities. Therefore, the group can outsource the necessary skills and resources to perform the activities or consult other groups as management experts to incorporate them in their management procedure. The main division of the Emirates Group is the Emirates Airlines, the group entirely uses its own resources with advice of private consultants in the industry. It also applies government experts to upgrade their systems, assist in market analysis and assess the quality of services. The main owner of the airline is the government, which makes it simpler to enable government involvement to the group. The quality assessment also shows that government influence in the city is appropriate in gathering international support for the airline. The government uses its influence especially in the oil market to influence different countries to enter into deals with the Emirates Airlines.
The other main division of the Emirates Group is the Emirates SkyCargo, a carrier service for the Emirates Airways. This division also uses advisories similar to those of the Emirates Airways. It also uses government influence to enable global market penetration. The two divisions have performed well in the last decade except in 2008 during the economic crisis. The fact that they use the government is important in resource allocation, since the government has disposable resources in terms of oil reserves. However, the group should also incorporate private shareholders. The quality assessment shows that companies with private shareholding perform better that than public companies. The reason is that public companies do not incorporate private ideas freely with relevant structures. Private airlines such as those in the US and Europe perform better in the market due to support from the public. The public feels that they own the company, thus, using its services increases revenues and dividends. The other major division of the Emirates Group is Dnata. It carries out ground operations for global companies including : the British Airways, United Airlines and Swissair among other major carriers. These companies advise Dnata on how to improve ground operations. Changi International Airport Services company which handles operations in Singapore is one of the subsidiaries of the Emirates Group. Through the use of practice advisories from the UAE government, external engineering consultants, security consultants, catering, IT, retail and advertisement services the Emirates Group has managed to improve its internal activities to ensure success. It has continued being one on the major aviation companies in the world. The quality assessment asserts that a stable organizational structure is the key to successful organization (McInerney & Van Etten, 2001).
Management experts point out that one of the most efficient ways to conduct quality assessment for all organizations regardless of their size is to employ an external audit team. This is to ensure that they will work with the internal audit professionals to determine how the business conforms to different organizational qualities. An external independent team provides and unbiased report on the quality assessment of the company. Information about the quality assessment of the Emirates Group is available in different literature sources. These external experts are versed with the proper assessment methodologies, standards, ethics and audit practices to ensure that they give valid reports. The quality assessment has conducted interviews, data analysis as well as management assessments to determine whether the Emirates Group shows nonconformance or conformance to specific standards. From the quality assessment, one can conclude the conformance levels of the Emirates Groups to standards, ethics, internal audit activities and performance advisories is generally high.