landing barge charter company, the company addressed here only accepts projects or charters that are suited to both their limitations and schedule as a company of that type. That makes perfect sense, as it is poor strategy and business practices to accept a job of any kind for which the company is not capable (Bradford & Duncan, 2000; Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003). Any company must understand its limitations, so that it does not get involved in projects where there can be no follow-through (Caplin & Schotter, 2008). When companies are offered jobs beyond what they can really accept, there is still a temptation to take them because of the desire for prestige or money. However, the taking of that kind of job often backfires on the company and causes more problems than benefits. The charter company can easily avoid this by making sure that it only takes jobs for which it is able to provide high-quality service that does not push its boundaries too much.
It is necessary to take into account the cost to move the cargo to the destination, as well as the extra requirements that are needed to service the charter properly. All costs are vital to the determination of the total price of a job (Drucker, 1954; Nag, Hambrick, & Chen, 2007). Where companies often make mistakes is in not ensuring that they are calculating all of their costs correctly. When they do that, they end up with extra, unanticipated expenses that can keep them from making a profit (Schartz, 1991). Weather conditions and tides can also be an environmental influence on the company, because of the nature of its work. Many companies do not worry about the environment that much because their work is conducted indoors. For companies that work outdoors, the environment plays a much more critical role and has to be more clearly addressed.
There are criteria involved in making a decision regarding a charter. Mostly, these involve the economic feasibility of doing the charter. If there is no cost effectiveness seen, the charter would not be able to be completed. This makes sense with any company, since all companies have to make a profit from the work that they do. Companies that do not bring in more money than they pay out will not be around very long, and they must work on strategies and business plans that allow them to be viable in today's market (Bradford & Duncan, 2000). No viability means no customers, which means no money and no future business. That is all a matter of common sense, but that does not mean that some companies still do not realize what they have to do in order to remain strong no matter what the economy is doing (Schartz, 1991; Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003). With a charter company, economic feasibility can depend on several factors, including the weather, the actual cargo, the client, the time of year, and other areas that may make things complicated.
No matter what a charter company hauls, or what clients need from that company, the fact is that economic feasibility is a requirement. Each business has to stay afloat by making enough money to pay the costs of doing business and have a profit left over once all of those costs are paid. The economy can play a large role in whether a company is successful or not (Bradford & Duncan, 2000; Caplin & Schotter, 2008). However, companies that are well aware of how to handle things correctly from a financial standpoint generally do well even when the economy is struggling. These companies know what they need to do, and they recognize the importance of making money. This is not about greed, but about being sure that the business is one that is sustainable over the long-term. Each business that is sustainable is able to help its owners, but it is also able to help its clients. That allows those clients to help others, thus keeping the business cycle moving (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003).
It is very important from an economic standpoint to ensure that all of the costs are being taken into account when a charter is quoted for a customer. That way, there is a profit margin that is acceptable. It is easy, sometimes, for a cost or several costs to get ignored or overlooked by a business, but even if these are small costs they can really start to add up (Bradford & Duncan, 2000). When a business is not careful with the costs it takes into account, those small costs that slip through the cracks can quickly eat into the expected profits. The other problem that often comes about when a company does not price things correctly is that the company has to raise its prices later in order to be sure that it can survive. Customers do not like to see prices go up and new fees get added, and that can harm the way the customers look at the business and how they feel about the cost of what they are getting (Bradford & Duncan, 2000; Nag, Hambrick, & Chen, 2007).
There are really no social criteria that has to be addressed with this kind of business, because the charter is a one-on-one deal with the client. Environmental criteria are also not that significant, because the only restrictions involved are those that could potentially affect the service received by the client. In other words, the seas matter and if there is seriously bad weather moving in that can delay the charter. If cargo has to be someplace else with a very tight deadline or on a specific date, the company must be very careful to ensure that it plans for weather. Environmental factors are often not on the radar of many companies, but companies that operate out in the elements have to take weather considerations into their strategies and planning (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003). By doing so, they avoid letting their customers down and causing delays that could sour the attitudes of customers and keep them from using the company again for their charter and cargo needs. Companies that get bad reviews from customers often find themselves struggling.
Any final decisions are made by taking into account all of the criteria involved and whether the master of the vessel is in agreement with the safety and accessibility that is needed in specific areas. This makes sense, because a company should have a specific procedure for making a final decision on taking on a client (Schartz, 1991; Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003). Companies that are not clear on the procedures they should be using can send mixed signals to a client and can also make it difficult for employees to do their jobs correctly. All company procedures should be very clear and easily understandable - especially where clients and their needs are concerned (Caplin & Schotter, 2008). It can be hard to meet the needs of all clients, and it is generally impossible to please everyone all the time. However, that does not mean that a company should not strive to make all customers happy. When procedures are clear and there is little to no guesswork, everything operates more smoothly and the clients know what to expect when they do business with that company.
If the master of the vessel does not feel comfortable with the safety and other factors, however, what he believes to be the correct choice must supersede the other instructions for client interaction. The master of the vessel is the one who will be involved with safely moving the customer's cargo from one place to another, and he should have the final say if there are concerns about the cargo or about the movement of that cargo. Without giving the actual person who is moving the cargo the final say in the issue, lives and property can be seriously put at risk. Too many companies focus on following procedure but they fail to take into account who makes the procedures into rules and regulations and how much those people actually understand about the work that the company does (Sullivan & Sheffrin, 2003). Companies that do not consult those who are directly involved with the work at hand can make procedural and regulatory mistakes that could otherwise be avoided.
The client is charged for services by the company, and the only funds that are put forward are for the running costs of the vessel. Those would include wages, maintenance, insurance, and other small costs (incidentals). In other words, the company is completely upfront with the client about the cost of the trip. The company ensures that the cargo gets there safely, and that the client is happy. Additionally, the vessel must be fueled and cared for properly, and the people who work on that vessel for the trip must be properly compensated. How the company charges is relatively transparent, which makes it easy for the client to get more than one quote from barge companies and…