Managing Information Systems
Airbnb is an IT company whose major business model includes providing homeowners with a strategic online scheme for presenting their homes to the potential customers while enabling customer to make online reservations. The company offers a premier online system that facilitates interaction between the host and the customer while accounting for all procedural demands including processing of payments. The company was established on year 2007 and by 2011; it had rented more than 2 billion rooms (Luca, & Edelman, 2012).
Overall context of the case/issue
The major issue surrounding the company’s system includes its inadequate strategies for protecting host’s properties from being destroyed by customers. The company has failed to establish an environment that would promote secure and healthy interaction. Consequently, property owners are often raising concerns against the practices of destructive customers accessed from the company’s system. Victims of customers’ malpractices are sending negative comments on the company’s site that has affected its reputation considerably (Luca, & Edelman, 2012).
Airbnb could have adopted various strategies to avoid the “EJ” incident. It is apparent that the incident occurred because of laxity of the company’s model of protecting their clients. The company could have avoided the incident if it had more engaging or binding procedures. Presently, the company obtains minimal information about their customers and it lacks obligatory measures that would discourage customers from mishandling host’s property. This loophole has created a situation where customers can misuse host’s property and escape successfully without facing essential consequences. Establishing a strategy that would hold customers accountable for their actions would have prevented the “EJ” incident. Such strategies could have included adopting policies that make customers disclose their full details to the company. Furthermore, the company could have requested its customers to pay a refundable fee that could act as a security.
The company could have avoided the aftermath of the “EJ” incident by responding quickly to the incident and adopting effective corrective measures. The case study identifies that Airbnb was reluctant to respond to the concerns raised in the “EJ” incident that worsened the situation (Luca, & Edelman, 2012). The company could have presented high commitment towards addressing the plight of victim in “EJ” case. This should have included considering the need of compensating the victim in order to protect its image.
Airbnb’s reputation system should not essentially mirror that of Ebay’s, but should struggle to outweigh it. Considering that both companies are competitors in the same field, establishing a stronger system would offer Airbnb a comparative advantage. The Airbnb’s system should differ with that of eBay by incorporating additional strategic tools that would enhance its efficiency. The company should evaluate weaknesses of the eBay’s system and establish a system that is able to address such faults.
Decision and recommendation
It is apparent that Airbnb needs to adopt strategic measures that could address issues raised towards its system in order to restore its reputation. The company should establish a system that would guarantee adequate security of the host properties and ensure that customer obtain services that corresponds to specifications in their orders. Consequently, the company should provide insurance for the hosts. It should also adopt a mechanism that would offer a more informed customer reviews and collect essential information about renters and host to enhance follow-ups. Furthermore, it should establish a strategy of rewarding host who provide their clients with good experience and recognizing well-behaved renters. This should include offering bonus to their cooperative clients and compensating victims of malpractices. Lastly, the company should adjust its terms to ensure that they are not pressuring hosts to accept renters. Calculative implementation of these strategies will facilitate trust between hosts and renters improving the reputation and efficiency of the Airbn’s system.
Luca, M. & Edelman, B. (2012). “Airbnb (A).” Boston: Harvard Business School Publishing.