More Shipping Companies Are Embracing Technology To Drive Down Costs, Says Buchmann

Container ships
Container ships

By Akanimo Sampson

The Managing Director of Hanseaticsoft, Alexander Buchmann, says technology will make more impact on the shipping industry this 2020, as companies are increasingly introducing cloud-based software and apps in their businesses.

Hanseaticsoft is, however, concerned with offering modern software solutions to optimise workflows in shipping companies. It also helps companies to gain new perspectives on processes and increase business performance. Many years of developing cross-departmental software for the maximum benefit has made Hanseaticsoft an expert in this field – not only in Germany but globally.

According to Buchmann, the increased availability, reliability and reduced cost of the internet at sea will be the key drivers for this growth, pointing out, “shipping companies globally are realising the many business advantages of technology to drive down costs, automate tasks, reduce administration and improving efficiencies.

“The cloud facilitates access to business data and applications from anywhere at any time and with any mobile device. Companies investing in cloud technology are improving the collaboration between teams onshore and at sea and creating a connected workplace culture that supports their strategic business goals.

“We are finally seeing paper-based systems being replaced by digital processes. Cloud-solutions are being introduced in areas including document management, managing crews, and resources, logistics and supply chain management, communicating with third parties and improving the wellbeing of seafarers, enabling them to communicate with their families and friends while at sea for long periods, reducing their isolation.

“The solutions are popular as the technology is straightforward, cost-effective and easy to implement. The staff doesn’t need to have advanced IT skills as shipping cloud software is intuitive and requires minimal training.”

Continuing, he said, “the biggest benefit for companies is that it enables them to have access to centralised, accurate and up to date data and reports, so they can make informed management decisions. This is changing how they are working, enabling them to be more responsive, agile and competitive, rather than reactive.

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“Operators can gain a complete 360-degree overview of their fleet and entire operations – they can also get rid of data silos and data being replicated in different systems – this is facilitating better information exchange between crews on the ship and employees onshore.”

“In many regions,’’ he went on, “smaller shipping companies and start-ups are the ones pioneering technology in their business, but this is because they can be more agile as they don’t have legacy technology systems in place like larger companies.’’

On Hanseaticsoft, he said, “we experienced fast growth in 2019 – which was also our 10th anniversary as a business. We added 19 new shipping companies to our global client base, including eight companies in Singapore, Philippines, India and China.

“A further 352 vessels are now using our Cloud Fleet Manager (CFM) to streamline their business and management processes to achieve greater efficiencies and profitability. In total over 1,500 vessels around the world are now managed using our software.

“We are looking forward to 2020 and we have several new modules and mobile apps planned in areas including crew management and document management. Also, in response to customer demand we will increase our client base in Europe, with a particular focus on Greece and we are also expanding into Asia, in countries including Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, Taiwan, the Philippines, Vietnam and Thailand.”