July 28, 2016 at 1:15 pm
Thank you for ur quick response.
Can u kindly suggest me some proper airline and a competitors which you think would be a suitable one to write on.As you have a better knowledge and experience in this field.
Thanking u once again as you guys has really made things easier:)July 30, 2016 at 7:36 am
I do not particularly like making recommendations / suggestions for companies and comparators (in fact I don’t actively encourage people to do Topic 8 as I think it is a boring, formulaic and unimaginative topic in spite of being the most popular). However Ryanair and Easyjet are frequent choices followed by American and Delta , Luftansa and BA and Cathay Pacific and Singapoore Airlines.
I do suggest however that you read through this forum to avoid the pitfalls of attempting a text-book type of analysis which just does not work for an airline or overloading your analysis with unnecessary percentages and figures that will result in your marker suffering ‘death by numbers’.August 4, 2016 at 10:36 am
Hi to all!
I am planning to give my RAP project on Topic 8 on May 2017 and i want to ask if its possible to compare Ryanair (main) with Flybe?
As they have the same date of published results 31st March! So i need March 31 2013/14, 14/15, 15/16 right?
Thank you!August 8, 2016 at 10:27 am
Provided you can get the relevant financial statements I don’t see why not. Mention any limitations of valid comparisons in the data limitations section.
Do NOT engage in currency translations these are completely unnecessary as by using ratios, comparisons may be drawn on the basis of comparing straight ratios. (In fact there are grounds for failing on understanding if you do translate currencies as it shows you don’t understand the purpose of ratios!)August 9, 2016 at 5:04 am
Hi @ahmed I am Zain from UAE. Brother I am also going to start my RAP on Emirates, I need to discuss a few things with you. I think you are the best person to advice on this.
ZainAugust 9, 2016 at 5:07 am
Anyone who has done their RAP on Emirates Airline, could you please contact me? I need to discuss a few things. I will be grateful to you.
Trephena: whilst we welcome queries to our forums we do not recommend students share their work. We have expert opinions on our forums based on advice given to us by members of the actual OBU marking team and these should be sufficient. To maintain the integrity of Opentuition we will remove or edit any posts which in our opinion either will comprise our standing or reputation or which we believe may be in contravention of the OBU rules on collusion.August 12, 2016 at 4:41 pm
This might sound totally dumb, but please I need some advice. Do we use the annual report or the financial report to anaylse? The annual report is so long winded. Do we need to read ALL the reports from the Chairman up til the independent auditors??
Thanks.August 13, 2016 at 8:22 am
The annual reports should be used selectively and can provide a,wealth of information if used appropriately. The chairman’s / directors’ reports are extremely useful for discovering strategies used or future plans. Use them along with the financial statements to understand and help explain the changes and trends in performance. The markers do NOT like comments that are just based on statements of the obvious or say things like ‘operating profit decreased because administrative and marketing costs increased’ and read like notes to the accounts. They want ‘proper’ reasons -if marketing costs have increased then why?
I have,also tried to impress on students that you should bring in KPIs used by airlines themselves – discuss such things as load factors, revenue/ costs / profit per available seat kilimetre (ASK). These KPIs are also in the annual reports.
Finally you will be expected to research more widely than just the annual reports and supplement some of the commentary with articles from the business press.August 29, 2016 at 5:39 pm
Any tips on how to find better references for airline ratio interpretation, please? I’m struggling as to find proper data online that can be linked to the reasons in the annual reports. E.g. in the evaluation of the increase/decrease of depreciation in net profit margin, there is no external site that would provide the aircraft fleet data the company had at year end so the increase would be justified. Any examples, help or tips would be appreciated.
Secondly during an evaluation of a ration how many references should be sought and how much can be included from annual reports?August 30, 2016 at 11:12 am
@tomphan – a common error with this topic is to do ratio analysis rather than a proper business and financial analysis. The latter involves looking at connections in the data and the impact a change in one area will have on another. You cite depreciation as a problem and expect to find the answer in an article somewhere – this is just not going to happen! Instead stop and think -what is depreciation, who decides how much it will be and how does it relate to other aspects of the business?
Then put this in the business context: aircraft cost millions of dollars (the good news is that with proper maintenance schedules they will last at least 15 -20 years)- so how is this going to be funded? How is this going to affect gearing and liquidity? An airline has to choose – lease or buy aircraft? How does this affect cash flow? Even if buying it does not go out and spend the millions in one go -there will be stage payments. Finally then you arrive at depreciation policies having considered how much operating profit is affected by any lease payments and maintenance. PS Unlike most assets you will probably find that dep’n is largely governed by flying hours (as is maintenance).
(When looking at gross profit also remember fuel is a major cost and newer more advanced aircraft are more fuel efficient)
So you need to think about how this capital intensive service industry ‘works’ and build up a proper picture of the industry -read the director and CEO statements to shareholders find out and read behind the notes to the accounts…. and finally burn your text books -the airline industry does not suit a textbook approach. Your references will come from linking reasons back to the business environment (economic and technological factors) and the annual reports (page numbers) but they need to be accompanied by sensible commentary that explains the picture appropriately.September 17, 2016 at 5:26 pm
I started working on the RAP and was targeting the March submission period but could only manage to complete parts 1 and 2 of the report.
Now I need to submit the RAP in the upcoming November submission period as after that the choice of sectors may may change and I too may need to change my company and the comparator which I don’t want to and I may also need to change the first 2 parts as well which will require additional effort.
Just to make sure, I only to need to start off from where I left or are there things that I need to make sure of before I resume?
Secondly, how should I start my part 3 which is the most important of all the 3 parts?
Thanks.September 18, 2016 at 1:17 am
I think if you consult the 2016/2017 Information Pack you will find the same sectors apply however you must use the latest financial statements otherwise it is an automatic fail.
Start Part 3 with the business analysis and application of the models as these factors will have influenced management decisions and therefore impacted on performance. The models are intended to help and guide the financial analysis and there should be links between the business and financial sections if you have done the RAP property. Ensure your graphs are clear and don’t use unnecessary and excessive numbers in the text unless you want to kill the marker by boring him/her to death (for which you will be punished with by a fail).October 5, 2016 at 1:43 am
I am planning to calculate current ratio, net profit margin, debt to equity ratio, operating margin, interest cover for EasyJet vs Ryanair…is it a good choice….?
Also, could you tell me how much time to spend on this? I am submitting next month. I have completed the business models thoughOctober 6, 2016 at 4:03 pm
I was thinking of doing T8 for the american airlines Delta and UCH because I was having trouble getting access to American Airlines Annual report.But now I have access to AA’s annual report so that won’t be a problem.Do you have any suggestions?I have’nt really done much yet so I can easily switch to AA instead of UCH.October 16, 2016 at 6:43 am
I have read from all different sources that while doing the financial analysis you need to refer to other ratios, worldwide trends and of course internal company analysis. In the business analysis you have to explain and give referenced reasons. I am applying SWOT and have discussed around 5 or 6 points for each heading. I will need to delete some points eventually to adhere to the word count. How can you all do in depth analysis in the 4500 words assigned in part 3? I feel as if they wont be adequate!
I am really short on words now and still have 5 ratios left to analyse. Also, I left the industry and company introduction for the last as I felt needed to focus more on the main project first. Now that I am squeezed for words, and do not want to lessen from my analysis points, can I omit the industry overview from the project? Would it affect my passing grade? I still have to write company introduction and including industry intro also would mean that my company introduction would get shorter in part 1. Are they both equally important? There is no mention of either of these in the BSc info pack though but I think all projects include them.
Thanks in advance.
-Confused me.October 16, 2016 at 8:17 am
The usual answer is to trim lots of the ‘tosh’ from the beginning (parts 1 & 2). As you haven’t done much for this then just don’t put in a lot of superfluous material – simples ! 🙂
I have written elsewhere that markers are unlikely to be the least bit interested in reading in the report why you (and the 99 other students whose work they are marking) chose the company and topic so save it for the SLS. Nor do they need some discussion of what primary data is nor its merits/defects when you are not even using primary data in your work! When it comes to discussing limitations of data gathering stick to what is relevant and the list of sources used should be succinct.
Markers need facts, detail and explanations that directly relate to the main study (part 3) to form a judgement on whether you have achieved the assessment criteria, not drivel, and have a limited time for marking, so are you surprised there is no mention of doing all the superficial material in the Information Pack?? Very brief company introductions and why they make good comparators will be sufficient for example.
The other usual way is to use the word count efficiently (and not bore the marker) by ensuring you have good clear graphs and charts and don’t then repeat too many numbers/percentages in the text (markers are not blind and stupid and are fully capable of seeing a trend from an appropriate graph and cannot assimilate figures thrown at them in the text at the speed of a machine gun!).
It is good linkage between the SWOT/PESTLE and the financial analysis that is important so good that you are going for depth and looking at worldwide trends.
I trust you are using useful KPIs too -and don’t even consider calculating the Quick ratio ( I know one marker who says when she sees this for a service industry she realises how little the student has bothered to think about the nature of the business or understands the basics of analysis!!!). Ensure you understand the Assessment Criteria (Appendix A) too as she reckons the majority only bother to look at this when they get their feedback sheet AFTER they have failed! 🙁October 16, 2016 at 9:27 pm
Thank you so much for your swift and detailed response. very helpful!
I have done everything for part 1 except the intros which I had left for last. I am surely getting better at cutting out tosh due to being pressed for words. Hoping it does not make the project seem superficial! Okay so I would write a few lines of company intro, nothing much detailed.
I have already done a fairly detailed quick ratio, but also explained what it means being in a service industry for the ratio trend! Thank you so much for guiding me on this. Now I would also cut down on the explanation I did for the quick ratio and it would give me more words for the other important ratios and conclusion.
I am only doing a detailed SWOT, no PESLE. My mentor was of the view that a detailed SWOT is better than 2 non-detailed business models so that is what I did.
Moreover, are 10 ratios enough to pass? Considering the analysis is well done.
Thanks a lot again!October 16, 2016 at 11:04 pm
And I have made all graphs from right to left as that is how we used to make them for presentations at my workplace! 2013 on the extreme right and 2015 on the extreme left 🙁 :'(
Do I need to change them all from right to left? :'(October 17, 2016 at 1:12 am
Ideally yes! The problem is I suspect you are not a native English speaker whereas the markers are. As English (and all Western languages) are read from left to right this means the native English speaker’s brain is programmed to read graphs from left to right so increases in trends over a period of time would rise from left to right in every graph an native English speaker produces. So if you do graphs the way you are with the latest year on the extreme left they see a declining trend when your comments in you report talk about increasing performance. It is all horribly confusing!!!!
It should not be a problem changing the graphs to read from left to right – Excel will switch the orientation in just a click. Personally I think it is worth doing as it is always a good idea to assist the marker to make sense of your work 🙂October 19, 2016 at 10:13 pm
Yes indeed I am not a native English speaker. Thanks lot for your advice and after correcting all the graphs and charts I can confirm that they do look better and make more sense! Truly grateful for your advice.
However, I am a bit disappointed that my mentor did not point this out. I wonder if he is allowed to or not, or can only comment on regarding the direction of my project. This makes me wonder what else there could be that can reduce the quality of my project but my mentor has not pointed that out 🙁
Very grateful for OT forums and all your help!
Best regards!October 19, 2016 at 11:37 pm
Do not be too harsh on your mentor! Unless he has spent time in the West it has probably never occurred to him that it appears odd. I always wondered why Asians did graphs that to me looked ‘ the wrong way round’ and then one day I realised it was due to the direction we read. There is no reason why the mentor can’t point this out as long as he doesn’t actually do the charts for you.
Mentors are often in a difficult position. They are supposed to guide and advise but should not have a hand in any of the work e.g. provide a template for the Excel spreadsheet or Presentaion or they could be suspended by OBU and their students end up as ACO cases (on the grounds that they have not done all the work themselves).
The mentor should not even have direct access to the SLS and Presentation – as one moderator told me – the role of the mentor is to be an observer of the Presentation and the SLS should be the student’s self-reflection and the mentor though mentioned in it, should not otherwise be involved and certainly should not be editing it.
Have you read Top Tips for the RAP? There may be a few helpful comments there and it is also worth reading our guide to Referencing to check you are following the ‘Golden Rules’. I have also produced a RAP Checklist which I shall post on the Forum in a couple of weeks but if you insert the key words ‘RAP checklist’ or ‘check list for submissions’ in the search facility you may be able to find an earlier version.October 25, 2016 at 8:05 am
I have chosen Qantas Airways as my main company and Virgin Australai as comparative but seems that company is strong with few weak points to note. this is really giving me hard time to feed into the recommendation section. so my question is ….do I have to do the RAP to give recommendation to a problem or any other reason?. it seems that I am not getting good with the RAP.
Qantas operates 65% of the market, while Virgin Australia covers less so do you think they can be comparable..
ThanksOctober 25, 2016 at 11:43 am
I have chosen Wizz Airlines and doing topic 8.
I wanted to ask there are other ratios like ASK/RASK to calculate. But I can’t get the information. Could you help me with this ?
Thank youOctober 25, 2016 at 10:30 pm
The analysis should comprise both financial information (revenue, profitability, liquidity, gearing and investors ratios) and operational and efficiency ratios e.g. revenue per ASK, profit per ASK, load factors, aircraft utilisation (related to how much time the aircraft are in the air). The basic data for this normally will be in the annual reports – I cannot state categorically for Wizz as I have never looked at their financial statements.October 26, 2016 at 12:00 pm
Can you tell me how many operational and efficiency ratios would be reasonable ?
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