Bring seaport communication solutions into the 21st century

Enrique Bolivar
April 18, 2019

Collaborative communications is essential for efficient seaport operations

In 2017 the World Trade Organization identified a 3.6% increase in world trade. And, according to the International Maritime Organization, 90% of all world trade is transported by ships. That means, as trade increases so too does the volume of goods moving through seaports around the world.

The International Monetary fund predicts that by 2030 the total tonnage of sea transport will double. Ships are getting larger, and container capacity is increasing, making shipping the most economical way to move large volumes of goods. While this is good for the seaport industry, it does pose potential issues.

Seaport employees in meeting for blog post

Seaport operations are complex, so all stakeholders need to be fully synchronized in order for the end-to-end process to run smoothly. Communication is crucial as the end-to-end process required to track cargo in and out of seaports demands close collaboration among the key stakeholders.

Important elements in the process include:

• Ship operations 

• Cargo operations 

• Port management 

• Customs, border, and port security

In addition, commercial aspects pertaining to the cargo need to be transacted accordingly, from the beginning, to the end of the process.

From a technology perspective, the seaport and shipping segment currently lag behind other segments in the transportation industry. Technological advancements such as, the Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), new generation traffic management, and 5G networks will be required to address the challenges that lay ahead. 

A move to the modern world

A comprehensive communications solution is vital for the coordination of manned and automated operations, terminal monitoring, and back office. Collaboration is fundamental to coordinate operational activities in the most effective way to: minimize costs, improve overall competitiveness, ensure environmental sustainability, and provide full transparency of traffic streams to all involved parties.

Adopting 21st century technologies will enable seaports to increase capacity, improve security, digitize commercial processes, enhance operations, and reduce their environmental footprint. Support for communications over different types of devices such as desk phones, smartphones and other radio communication devices such as, sensors or even drones will be essential. Multimedia conversations over IM, voice and video using instant collaboration tools, will enable quicker decision-making and problem resolution.

ALE provides a broad communications portfolio, to address the demands of seaports, that includes telephony services based on the Alcatel-Lucent OmniPCX® Enterprise offering. The portfolio includes an alarm notification server, emergency crisis management, voice recording, as well as integration and interconnection with different functional blocks such as radio communication through standard protocols.

A communications solution that integrates with business processes is essential to enable efficient operations. The Alcatel-Lucent Rainbow™ CPaaS solution integrates with the business environment to provide communication services such as chat, file sharing, voice and video, over any device to enrich the end user applications. As well, Rainbow leverages AI, chatbots, system databases and analytics to automate and simplify operational processes and create new services to support the transportation industry.

Learn more about how ALE transportation solutions are helping seaport and shipping customers move to the 21st century.

Enrique Bolivar

Enrique Bolivar

Solution Marketing, Transportation, ALE

Enrique, as Transportation solution marketing, is responsible for the creation of solutions, value propositions and content to address the different transportation sectors such as Railway, ATI, ITS and Ports and Logistics, supporting the global ALE sales team. He has over 15 years of experience in the telecommunication industry working on the enterprise market. Enrique was part of the International Central Presales team providing support to sales and presales teams worldwide with a strong knowledge on end-to-end solutions, network VoIP design, UCC and UCaaS solutions.

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