Maritime Workflows: Best Practices for Charterers

In this second part of the series, you will look deeper into how automated workflows can support maritime operations. We'll explore different use cases and examples of how you can use Voyager workflows to streamline processes and improve efficiency in the marine industry.

Workflow Example #1: Ship to Shore and Noon Reporting

Traders, distributors, and importers can receive daily noon reports from the spot, COA, and TC vessels in various formats such as email, XLS, and PDF. This data must be manually collected and monitored for crucial changes to fuel consumption, speed, and arrival times.

But manually processing this data is extremely time-consuming, as critical information in the voyage can be missed, and excess fuel consumption needs to be picked up quickly.

The Voyager Approach

This workflow ensures customers can create and customize their custom noon report forms on the platform and share them via hyperlink and email to the ship’s captains and crew.

Upon completing the daily noon report into the record, data is rolled into an Exceptions Management Dashboard which tracks any changes to the information from earlier reports.

Ship to Shore Workflow Example

Some interesting use cases include creating an Exceptions Dashboard to monitor a 7-day rolling speed variance; or building a Tolerance Percentage Validation Step that can alert the dashboard if the daily consumption exceeds the planned limit, or if BL quantity exceeds a specified threshold.

Workflow Example #2: Bunker Planning, Procurement and Appointment

Bunker planning and procurement is commonly managed on email, XLS, and email. This provides limited visibility over bunker price quotes and stem availability relative to the ship movement, which often results in last-minute bunker purchases at a premium to market or penalties for late pickup.

The Voyager Approach

This workflow is designed for operations teams that need to request quotes from their selected bunker providers. Quotes and stem availability are consolidated into a dashboard view, and the user can notify the winning provider directly through Voyager.

Bunkering Details Quote Box

The winner has access to the vessel information and is able to track inbound movement, quantity requirements and specs. Final invoices and documents can be uploaded into Voyager for centralized data management.

Bunkering Trip Information Card

Workflow Example #3: Surveyor Appointments

To ensure smooth coordination between agents, terminals, suppliers, and ships, surveyors must have visibility on incoming shipments, operations, and requests from the captain. This is often handled via email, resulting in key information being lost and delays or miscommunication around demands.

The Voyager Approach

Surveyors can be appointed and nominated directly through Voyager, allowing for the exchange of data and documents between the nominating party and the agent.

Agent Appointments Workflow Example

The nominated surveyors can have access to the portal to communicate and track inbound voyage status. This ensures multi-party stakeholders’ collaboration and visibility across the operation.

Workflow Example #4: Freight Request-for-Quote (RFQs)

It’s very challenging to maintain global visibility on all freight tenders and future freight rate movements when the RFQ process and bidding process are handled in a manually and decentralized way. Automating the request-for-quote process ensures data on historical price trends or future price trends is accessible and accurate, allowing for consistent real time decision making.

The Voyager Approach

This workflow is designed to allow customers to send out short-term and long-term (12 + months) quote requests to carriers. Manufacturers and operators can easily customize the requirements to be quoted, and the carriers can provide detailed quotes directly back into Voyager.

Open RFQs Dashboard

Companies can also award the bid and generate the contract through Voyager, allowing for real-time visibility of trends in freight quotes now and into the future and granular analysis of historical quotes via trade lane, product type, and operator.

Workflow Example #5: Customer Visibility Portal

Manufacturers that deliver to multiple customers worldwide often must keep buyers updated on inbound shipments, while handling multiple complexes and highly variable ship schedules. Companies that still manually update their stakeholders usually experience long delays due to time zones, which frustrates customers and creates a negative experience.

The Voyager Approach

In this workflow, stakeholders are given dedicated access to the platform to track their inbound shipments, schedule changes, and collect documents. ETAs are collected directly from the carriers via API or email and then visualized in a Voyager Dashboard, reducing the manual labor required to update arrival times.

That way, customers can get the ETA updates immediately from the ship rather than the update passing through multiple hands, increasing accuracy in the information and overall customer satisfaction.

Itinerary Accuracy Dashboard

As you may know, the maritime industry is one of the most complex and demanding industries out there. To keep up with the ever-changing environment, companies need to have efficient workflows in place. 

These are examples of how low-code workflows can be powerful tools for complex maritime operations that ship all types of commodities, allowing for efficient and collaborative ship-to-shore reporting, bunker planning, agent appointments, and request-for-quote processes. 

By automating manual workflows with low-code technology, companies can save time, reduce risk and improve customer satisfaction. This while maintaining data integrity and real-time visibility of their voyages’ most essential KPIs.

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