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8 Ways to Gain Value from Maritime Business Intelligence Software

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Business intelligence (BI) is a top priority for C-Level Management. The global mobile business intelligence software market is expected to be valued at $29.6 billion by 2027, with Cloud analytics being the fastest growing segment. 

BI is also becoming a hallmark of maritime ERP solutions (such as the BASSnet suite). Here’s why: 

  • BI drives greater operational efficiency 
  • It improves safety and quality
  • It improves environmental performance 
  • BI gives a competitive business advantage. 

It’s no surprise that shipping is adopting business intelligence software to support maritime decision making 

But simply having BI tools at your disposal is not enough.  

How you use BI and the type of business intelligence you have in your arsenal will determine whether you effectively optimise your fleet operations, increase efficiency, and meet your business goals.  

It’s time to gain the most value out of your business intelligence software. 


How Maritime Benefits from Business Intelligence Software

So how can ship managers and owners leverage business intelligence software to optimise their operations?  


1. Take ownership of your data 


Shipping holds a wealth of operational and other fleet data aboard vessels and at the office. It can be overwhelming to collect and interpret this data in a structured way for meaningful data analysis.  

What’s the solution? Business Intelligence software that uses data warehousing.  

  • Data warehousing through systems such as Microsoft Power BI (leveraged by BASSnet’s BI Dashboard, for example) centrally captures data for end-to-end visibility. 

  • Statistical platforms such as the BASSnet BI Dashboard are built on a data warehouse foundation for both in-depth analysis and data visualisation. You gain useful flexibility with multiple dashboard variations based on available datasets.  

  • Data warehousing gives you next-level capability – beyond the traditional data reporting limits – to take full ownership of your fleet and operational data and perform multi-dimensional data analysis

  • You gain a holistic view of your business and operational data by using both standard and customisable datasets, integrated and centralised from a variety of sources (including third parties).

  • In the case of BASSnet, new datasets are continually added to keep you up to date and on track with your fleet’s business needs.


It’s also beneficial to obtain the services of experienced maritime experts to handle vessel PMS data population, conversion, migration and fleet-wide standardisation to ensure you have a clean and structured database for reliable and accurate data analysis. 


2. Use holistic business insights for better decision-making 

“Seeing only half the picture does a disservice to ship managers and owners. Gain the most value from a centralised overview of data analytics to fully optimise vessel operations.” 
Johannes Hapke, Business Analyst Manager, BASS Software 

 It’s tempting to analyse maritime data in a modular fashion, but this would be a mistake.  

 Fleet management involves interconnected processes and operations which impact each other. It’s beneficial to use integrated ship management solutions (like BASSnet) which provide a centralised database.  

 The next step is business intelligence which analyses fleet data across a broad range of ship management areas.  

 Using holistic and centralised data from across your organisation will help to pinpoint overarching process gaps and weaknesses and give a bird’s eye view on areas for improvement.  

 You can then implement streamlined improvements fleetwide, bringing higher cost savings while increasing productivity across the organisation.  

 The BASSnet BI Dashboard, for example, provides holistic data insights based on fleet data extracted from multiple BASSnet modules including ship maintenance, operations, procurement, safety and quality, finance, crewing and project management.  

 You can also integrate and consolidate data from a wide range of third parties for deeper analysis. 

 Ensure you don’t miss blind spots and weaknesses in your business processes by using a holistic and end-to-end BI approach to drive better decision making. 


3. Identify correlations and analytical trends 

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”  
Charles Darwin 

 Trend analysis gives businesses a prized competitive advantage. For shipping, it can mean the difference between smooth and efficient operations or costly delays and incidents.  

 BI software can take this one step forward by using historical data to make predictions. Learning from the past can prevent costly mistakes in the future.  

 Predictive analysis makes it easier, for example, to determine the best time for critical maintenance jobs, dry dockings or crew changes. This brings tangible performance, operational, safety and cost benefits, not least from avoiding unplanned downtime. 


Analytical Tools and Techniques 

 Connect the dots through correlations and trends to take your organisation in the right direction. 

 Here are helpful analytical tools you can use: 

Descriptive Analysis: 

  • Scorecards  
  • KPI analysis  
  • Benchmarking  
  • Timeline analysis 


Diagnostic Analysis: 

  • Drill down to detail 
  • Cluster analysis & Root cause analysis (e.g. Marine Systematic Cause Analysis Technique(M-SCAT))
  • Experience/Incidents Correlations 
  • Vessel Age/Expenses Correlations 


Predictive Analysis: 

  • Forecasting methods (e.g. for Fuel Performance) 
  • Scenario analysis (e.g. Cost Benefit analysis) 
  • Budgeting 
  • Risk Assessment 


Prescriptive Analysis: 

  • Warehouse optimisation
  • LCL (Less than a container load) optimisation 
  • Stowage plans 
  • Vessel performance optimization.

Watch this webinar to learn more about these valuable analytical tools. 


4. Use dashboards for personalised insights 

“An organization needs the right set of easy-to-use tools – e.g., dashboards or recommendation engines – to enable personnel to extract the relevant insights…” 
McKinsey, Achieving Business Impact With Data 

 A broad-brush approach doesn’t cut it if you wish to stay agile with your reporting. Instead, user-curated analytics are the best choice for personalised insights.  

 People are a key link in the insights value chain. If users are unable to engage deeply with your business intelligence software, you won’t gain much value.  

 This is why solutions such as BASSnet’s BI Dashboard displays information in a user-curated dashboard with drill-down capability to record level.  


Visual analytics 

 Visual analytics is a critical, user-friendly way to view data. Leveraging on the powerful Microsoft Power BI Embedded, BASSnet’s end-to-end BI Dashboard comes with useful, pre-designed analytics’ views while giving users the flexibility to customise dashboard layouts.  

 Users can more easily and intuitively spot patterns and interpret data that’s visualised in colourful charts, graphs and tables. You also have flexibility to filter according to preference. 


Drill-down to transaction details 

 Using BI software for surface level insight wastes the rich potential of fleet big data. Instead, use solutions like our BI Dashboard to drill down to transaction details for a better understanding.  

 You should never have to sacrifice specifics in favour of a high-level view. Vessel performance and operational processes benefit from improvements at all levels. Ensure you have the option to drill-down to record detail to extract the most value from your business intelligence. 


5. Perform multi-dimensional analysis  

Ship managers and owners analyze data and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to track performance and drive improvements.  

However, the type of analysis you perform can impact the value of your insights. 

BI tools which offer multi-dimensional analysis provide deeper and more meaningful insights that take into account multiple points of view.  


Different perspectives can fuel growth 

 Solutions like the BASSnet BI Dashboard perform complex calculations using datasets in the data warehouse to, for example, analyse the operational performance of the fleet.  

 This is a meaningful way to identify high and low-performing vessels in your fleet, as you can then easily make adjustments to optimise vessel performance.  

 Such complex insights cannot be derived without multi-dimensional analysis. Needless to say, manual analysis from paper logbook reporting is far behind in this area. 


Maritime applications of multi-dimensional analysis 

 Smart resource allocation, improving environmental performance, and cost-benefit analysis are only some of the activities that benefit from multi-dimensional analysis in your data driven decision making.  

 When it comes to accidents and incidents, you can look not only at the number of accidents happening but also the root cause(s), corrective or preventive actions taken and what activities were performed while those accidents happened. This will give a better – and more complete – understanding of problem areas.   

 This valuable use of BI software promises increased efficiency in a cost-effective manner. 



6. Take advantage of scalable insights 

 If you wish to facilitate effective decision-making across your organisation, scalable insights are of great benefit!  

 Use your BI solution to get reporting views on not only an annual but quarterly, monthly, and daily basis.  

 This time perspective on insights can help determine next steps at both small and broad levels. This enables you to quickly pivot to optimise operations as needed. 

 Scalable insights are also helpful when looking more holistically at the company’s overall performance or larger business units instead of individual vessels.  

 Look at analytics by vessel type or vessel group, different units or offices or pools, and compare analysis for these levels against each other to see where line management, for example, can make useful changes. 

 Using a solution with scalable insights will also make it easy to share business intelligence with multiple stakeholders across your organisation, increasing user adoption. 



7. Gain a better understanding of cause and effect 

Correlation does not equal causation. It’s vital for ship owners and managers to gain a better understanding of cause and effect to identify the right problem areas.  

This will not only lead to optimised operations but also save costs and resources that could be wrongly allocated to solve the wrong problems. This is not a trivial benefit. 

 Business intelligence software that is flexible and scalable can give you clear insights that keep you on the right track. You gain an objective view of your fleet performance and reduce the chances of bias in your decision-making 



8. Real-time monitoring on the go 

It’s not enough to look at maritime data analytics from the historical perspective. Close to real-time insight assists executives on the move to stay ahead of potential non-compliance and missed targets before they become a serious issue.  

 An integrated and holistic approach to BI can bring more value, as mentioned above. The benefits of multi-platform access is an essential aspect. 

 With the right solution, management can access important fleet operational data across multiple devices, whether desktop, laptop or mobile devices. They can access this information anytime and anywhere.  

 Remote access is an integral part of using business intelligence software for time-sensitive gains that drive your business forward. 


Maritime Industry Looks To The Future

Ship owners and managers seek the forefront of the latest maritime technology. It’s clear that business intelligence is the new horizon in fleet management.  

It can multiply efficiency and productivity quickly across an entire organisation. The right software can facilitate informed decision-making and give your company an edge over the competition.  

However, it’s important to identify how you can benefit from your business intelligence software in a clear and meaningful way. Use maritime business intelligence the right way to drive improvement in the quality and cost-effectiveness of your ship management.   

Choosing the right business intelligence technology can take your fleet management to the next level. The BASSnet BI Dashboard is a complete end-to-end solution to make data-driven decisions that increase fleet efficiency and optimise operations.

Accessible on desktop, laptop or mobile, the BASSnet BI Dashboard is the perfect solution for ship owners and managers on the move. Schedule a demo today!

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