In this candid interview, Platform8 CEO Lauren Salisbury discusses the recent changes with NSW Ports’ Wayne Ashton, Operations Manager, and Josh Davidson, IT Manager.
About NSW Ports
NSW Ports holds long term leases to manage Port Botany and Port Kembla, which together handle millions of tonnes of diversified trade each year.
With over 42% of goods in a Sydney household imported in containers through Port Botany, and 100% of motor vehicle imports arriving through Port Kembla, NSW ports are an essential part of maintaining the Australian way of life.
Smartflow and Platform8
Smartflow and Platform8 aim to provide a seamless and efficient exchange of information, enhancing the tank storage industry's safety, productivity, and sustainability. With real-time monitoring and analytics, the two solutions optimize vessel loading and unloading, reduce waiting times, and minimize the risk of accidents and environmental incidents.
Smartflow and Platform8 enable collaboration and communication between ship and shore operators, ensuring smooth and timely operations. With these digital solutions, tank storage companies can improve their operational efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance their environmental and safety performance, ultimately delivering more excellent value to their customers and stakeholders.
The push towards digitization was catalyzed by the COVID-19 pandemic, which highlighted the inefficiencies of NSW Ports' traditional paper-based processes.
Josh Davidson, IT Manager at NSW Ports, reveals that the initial response was a bespoke solution during COVID-19, but the need for a more robust system was evident as they moved forward. The search for a resilient platform led them to NxtPort International, who pointed them toward Platform8, which in turn introduced them to Smartflow's ISGOTT solution.
The driving force behind the shift, as Wayne Ashton, Operations Manager at NSW Ports, points out, was the need for a standardized, user-friendly, and transparent system.
With five tenants at the port, multiple chemical users, and the Port Authority of New South Wales to consider, the platform had to accommodate diverse needs while ensuring inclusivity for non-native English speakers involved in the processes.
Digitization has already begun to bear fruit, providing consistency with international standards and facilitating a universal document process for terminals, ships, and port use. Josh Davidson emphasizes that data has become an invaluable asset, ensuring high-quality, consistent, and auditable data critical for assessing risk, performance, and billing.
Collaboration has markedly improved post-implementation. Stakeholders now enjoy real-time transparency and have abandoned the constant need for updates. The feedback from ship captains has been overwhelmingly positive, praising the simplicity and effectiveness of Smartflow.
The implementation journey, while complex due to the coordination across time zones and unique operational models, was seamless. Both Wayne Ashton and Josh Davidson laud the support from Platform8 and Smartflow's responsiveness to customization needs. The ease of transition is a testament to the robustness of the Smartflow system, which allowed for a pain-free IT implementation and a quick delivery of the standard product.
The success at NSW Ports has set a precedent, with plans to introduce Smartflow Digital ISGOTT Solution to Port Kembla. The first stage has set the groundwork for further digital enhancements, with API capabilities that promise to streamline additional operational processes.
Both NSW Ports and Platform8 look back at the project with satisfaction, reflecting on the collaborative spirit that made this digital leap possible. The expectation is high for the upcoming implementation at Port Kembla.
If the experience at NSW Ports is anything to go by, the maritime and tank storage sectors can expect a smoother, more efficient future thanks to digital innovation.
Start your digital transition