Fortunately, the cost of communicating with vessels at sea and oil rigs has reduced significantly in recent years and therefore it’s easier to talk to offshore workers than it has been historically. Given the fast-paced nature of the Covid-19 pandemic, it’s essential that crew managers feel they are able to easily communicate with their travel suppliers in order to stay up to date with changing travel restrictions and guidelines.
However, it’s important for crew managers to set guidelines and processes for streamlined communication to ensure that everything that is shared is useful.
Hand in hand with better communication between vessels and those offshore is the quick adoption of onboard technology. Speaking at the 2020 edition of CrewConnect, Nikos Gazelidis, global head of shipping at ATPI Marine & Energy, outlined the urgent need for shipping companies to address crew logistics as a single, seamless process by integrating information from manning agents, port agents and travel management companies.
Reducing the current fragmented set of manual functions that a crew change requires will save money, increase efficiency and highlight ahead of time when there is a high risk of a crew change not happening.
Gazelidis said:“Crew changes are about cost and viability, and as shipping companies work around the challenges of shrinking airline networks and extra quarantine times for crew, the bill is getting bigger. Mitigating these costs in the long run requires looking at crew changes as one integrated function, and all parties involved need to have the same visibility and accountability.”
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