July 29, 2019

Backbone of #BOURBONINMOTION strategic action plan, the Smart shipping program is fundamentally transforming crew working methods. Cédric Ménard, manager of the program, tells us about the underlying principles of Smart shipping and its deployment. An interview.

OFFshore: Can you remind us what Smart shipping means in a few words?

Cédric Ménard: This program aims at reducing Bourbon Marine & Logistics fleet’s operating costs by redesigning onboard and onshore work organization with the will to simplify and standardize practices as well as to innovate with an opportunistic approach. It also aims at improving operational excellence at optimum safe manning. To do so, we are leveraging on digital solutions that will also allow us to improve customer service. This program concerns 3 operational levels: Vessel, Local support and Remote support. It began in late 2017 and should reach its objectives early 2021.


OFFshore: As we approach the summer of 2019, how far has the deployment of Smart shipping progressed?

C.M.: The new maintenance management system and the 6 onboard digital applications of the program have been deployed on twenty vessels. We are still in the development phase for the rest. The DPO Flex, which aims at reducing the number of seafarers involved in a vessel dynamic positioning operations, will lead us to eliminate engine watch requirement where possible and to train mutli-purpose officers. For local support, we are setting up a hub in Gabon. Regarding the remote support: the Bourbon Operational Support Center (BOSC)* Project aims to improve Bourbon Marine & Logistics fleet operational and economical management by simplifying and standardizing processes as well as developing tailor made digital supporting tools.


OFFshore: How has the deployment taken place?

C.M.: Deployment is set for 133 smart vessels by waves of 12 vessels. In December 2019, 60 vessels should be operational with Smart shipping as new operational model on board.


OFFshore: How is Smart shipping perceived by customers?

C.M.: Generally speaking, reception has been quite positive and I would like to express my thanks to our customers who never obstructed this project. We have not yet had direct digital interaction with them within the framework of the Smart shipping program, but thanks to new onboard digital applications, we potentially offer them a large quantity of additional operational data that could be very useful for them in the management of their activities.


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