One of the challenges facing the maritime industry is the shift from traditional paper-based inspections to a more modern, digital approach. Recognizing this, Kaiko Systems recently hosted a live webinar on inspection digitization. The webinar, attended by many industry professionals worldwide, was aimed at revealing the best practices to harness the power of digitized inspections, leading to more efficient, reliable, and insightful inspection data.
Fabian Fussek, Co-Founder & CEO at Kaiko Systems, Nick Vaughan, Director of Business Development at Kaiko Systems, and Andrii Bezrodnii, Technical Director at Columbia Shipmanagement, shared valuable insights and practical steps on implementing and maximizing the value from digital inspections.
Key topics and takeaways
Digitized inspection essentials
The webinar highlighted the importance of establishing a modern tool for your fleet. Paper-based systems are becoming outdated due to their inherent flaws: they're labor-intensive, error-prone, and often lead to data loss or unstructured data. In contrast, digital inspections increase efficiency and accuracy, paving the way for data-driven decision making. As the speakers elaborated, switching to digitized inspections could not only streamline operations but also serve as a springboard for larger digital transformations.
Effective trial and roll-out
A major theme discussed during the webinar was the need for an effective trial before committing to a fleet-wide roll-out of digital inspections. Drawing from Kaiko Systems' experience, a quick trial is necessary not only to evaluate the digitized solution but also for the solution provider to understand the current workflow within the technical team, thereby facilitating tailored solution adaptations and use-case development. On the other hand, it's important for both the company and the solution provider to agree on the goals for the trial. To preserve momentum across all stakeholders, the trial duration should be optimally brief.
Off-hire risk mitigation
Digitized inspections offer real-time insights, but an even more vital element is the presence of a reliable dataset, often lacking in many solutions. A robust dataset forms the backbone for accurate vessel health assessments. By having immediate access to inspection data, necessary maintenance and repairs can be identified and actioned swiftly. This immediate response system helps avoid downtime, thus saving considerable costs and improving vessel availability.
The advantage of instant report generation
The panelists also underscored the benefit of prompt report generation with digitized inspections. Traditional methods often require substantial time for compiling, interpreting, and distributing reports. In contrast, digital systems facilitate instant capturing and sharing of data, accelerating the entire reporting process. This efficiency not only saves time but also ensures that all relevant stakeholders have immediate access to essential information.
For digitized inspections to bring value from day one, they must integrate into existing workflows. This smooth integration will ensure that teams can adapt to the new system quickly and efficiently, thereby saving time and enhancing productivity.
Fireside chat insights
Additionally, the webinar included a fireside chat with Andrii Bezrodnii, Technical Director at Columbia Shipmanagement about challenges of digitization journey, how to choose a right partner and future trends in the maritime industry. Below you will find some notable insights, but make sure to check the full recording.
Fabian Fussek: As you are one of the first to embrace digital inspections, could you share some insights behind your decision to do so?
Andrii Bezrodnii: As a ship management organization, we are constantly screening the market for new projects and focused on digitalization. After evaluating several products, we chose Kaiko Systems because it offers not only a ready product but also a platform that can be tailored to our management system. This flexibility was crucial as we wanted to adopt a system that could integrate with our existing processes, rather than having to adapt our system to fit a new platform. Additionally, one of the main reasons for choosing digital inspections was to move away from the outdated practice of using pen and paper checklists, which had become a tick box exercise. The crew members have responded positively to the digital inspection platform as it offers a more attractive and efficient way of working with tablets on board.
Fabian Fussek: When introducing new software, what are the typical hurdles or concerns you face?
Andrii Bezrodnii: Whenever we implement something new on board our vessels or in the office, it's normal to have initial resistance. People were unsure about how it will work and often claim they don't have time for it. However, once they start using Kaiko Systems' platform and see its benefits, their opinion changes. The system's automatic download and technical support features address common weaknesses in inspections, making the process more efficient. Overall, it's important to emphasize that training is crucial not only for the crew members but also for the office personnel. Both the vessel and the office need to work together to ensure effective utilization of the system.
Fabian Fussek: What was the feedback from your team and crews on Kaiko Systems? Do you have any standout examples?
Andrii Bezrodnii: So far, we have received positive feedback from the vessel crews. They find the process interesting and have provided valuable suggestions for additional features and control models. The shipping industry has traditionally lagged behind in adopting new technologies, but crew members are generally enthusiastic about embracing new advancements. It's important to acknowledge that many ships in the industry are quite old, with some being 15 to 20 years old. Therefore, introducing new technologies creates excitement among the crew members.
Fabian Fussek: Looking ahead, what do you think are the key challenges for technical management and shipping in the next few years? Do you have any predictions?
Andrii Bezrodnii: In the next 10 years, we anticipate a shortage of office personnel, with an estimated deficit of around 40,000 to 50,000 professionals in the market. Additionally, we expect a significant decline in the crew's skill level due to various reasons. To compensate for these challenges, we need to rely on new technologies that assist technical superintendents in monitoring vessels. Companies like Kaiko Systems offer programs that streamline vessel management and maintenance. Digitalization is playing a crucial role in addressing these issues and improving vessel control. The shipping industry is gradually recognizing the benefits of digitalization in managing vessels effectively.
With partners such as Columbia Shipmanagement, Kaiko Systems is at the forefront of bringing value from digitized inspections from day one. Embrace digitization and start your journey towards safer, smarter, and more collaborative technical operations.
Watch the full webinar recording HERE.