BASIC INTRODUCTION ABOUT SHIPPING ANALYTICS
Over the last two decades, technological advancements have reduced the cost of transactions while increasing competition and transparency. Similar technological advancements have made other industries such as insurance, healthcare, transportation and retail more competitive. However, marine transportation has not yet seen such large-scale transformation, which has resulted in a largely outdated and burdensome decision-making process.
Finding the right ship for cargo at the most economical price is a key function performed by charterers. However, charterers’ access to this information is limited to what is provided by existing brokers and ship owners. Since the information is shared “selectively,” it may or may not be most efficient. Charterers who have established relationships with many brokers will most likely be able to find a suitable ship to transport cargo, but the same is not true for small ship owners and charterers who lack access to timely information. In such a situation, how can charterers ensure they have made the right decision if the information provided is incomplete or suspect?
There is an opportunity to utilize readily available, accurate and actionable information to improve decision making. Consider a charterer who is looking for a third-party vessel to move cargo from the Arabian Gulf to South East Asia for a certain cargo size and date. Rather than relying on the ship brokers for options, freight rates and other information, a simple information portal (see Figure 1) can provide various alternatives for review. The charterer can provide pertinent inputs, such as load area (Arabian Gulf), cargo size (280,000 MT) and trade dates (October 26 to October 30). The information portal will then provide a list of suitable vessels available in the Arabian Gulf around that time.
This is how shipping analytics works in other countries and shipping analytics services are fulfilled.
HOW SHIPPING ANALYTICS TRANSFORM THE SHIPPING INDUSTRY
Shipping analytics services has seen a wide change in the way the shipping industry has successfully evolved.
This success is made possible by integrating Automatic Identification System (AIS) information, position reports, estimated times of arrivals, vessel specifications (such as size) and market information into an exchange portal used to find all available alternatives, as well as the freight forecast. This type of portal can give charterers and ship owners access to more options thus improving transparency and competiveness. The charterers can further improve decision making by integrating vessel availability data with their internal or external vetting information. If a vessel does not meet the required standards and has sub-par feedback, then the ship can be removed from the selection process early on. This process will also help save time by selecting only the best available vessel for the cargo.
Shipping analytics and shipping reporting services are unique due to the visibility across orders from all of your selling channels (if you use shipping software with that capability). It’s typically the most holistic view available, and in many cases it is more powerful than even your own accounting system.
Shipping analytics services and platform analytics services can provide valuable insights into many aspects of customer behavior and the performance of your shipping process.