Cookies help us deliver the best experience on our website. By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies Dismiss

Seafarers’ wellbeing a priority over festive season, says Hanseaticsoft MD

Alexander Buchmann, managing director of Hanseaticsoft Alexander Buchmann, managing director of Hanseaticsoft

With the festive season approaching the wellbeing of seafarers is something shipping companies should prioritise as it can be a very challenging time for those who are away from family and friends over Christmas, says Alexander Buchmann, managing director of Hanseaticsoft.

{mprestriction ids="1,2"} According to UK based mental health charity, Mind over a quarter of people (26 per cent) would not feel able to ask for help at Christmas if they were struggling emotionally and one in ten people consider taking their own life because of the festive period. Other research by the Sailors’ Society and Yale University highlighted that more than a quarter of seafarers suffer from depression – and many won’t ask for help.

Alexander Buchmann says one way that shipping companies can improve wellbeing on board is to provide personal internet access for seafarers. “Christmas can be a difficult time for seafarers who are working, exacerbating feelings of loneliness and depression. It’s often a normal working day at sea and for those with children it can be tough not seeing them open their presents.

“Providing personal internet access for all crew so they can keep in touch with family is something that can easily be done since more shipping companies now have access to the internet.  Being able to email, phone or use video calling apps such as Facetime can make a big difference to crew over the Christmas period.

“Having internet access can also mean crew are able to use apps to access mental health support or other groups and organisations that could help with a range of issues. Personal internet access should be a priority for those not already offering it, as it can help improve health and wellbeing at what can be a really difficult time of year.”

Futurenautics Maritime’s Crew Connectivity 2018 survey of over 6,000 seafarers, found 75 per cent now use the Internet at sea – an increase of 32 per cent or over half a million more crew since 2015.

A survey by the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) and the European Community Shipowners’ Associations (ECSA) highlighted that 60 per cent of respondents said that the provision of internet access to seafarers for personal use may have improved the mental health and wellbeing of seafarers and 69 per cent believe it is good for morale. 

Another way for shipping companies to improve wellbeing is to ensure crew are getting enough rest and stick to legal limits on how many hours they can work. Hanseaticsoft’s Rest Hours Module, part of its Cloud Crewing software solution, is helping companies to do this by reducing tiredness and improving the health and wellbeing of seafarers.

The Rest Hours module digitalises and centralises the process via cloud technology. It allows crews to enter their own rest hours rather than relying on someone else to collect and enter the data. This means they can access their own data and ensure the correct times have been entered.

“Looking after the wellbeing of seafarers should be on the agenda all year round, not just at Christmas. Working on a ship can be tough job but offering connectivity onboard can help combat loneliness and could provide a point of difference that could also help with recruitment and retention.

“With internet access shipping companies can also use cloud solutions to streamline onboard processes, allowing them to connect on and offshore teams and collaborate on every aspect of crew management and administration. This includes the Rest Hours module which is improving the wellbeing of seafarers, ensuring decent working conditions and preventing fatigue on ships.” {/mprestriction}

Related items

  • SNSfortech adds secure communications tool by Armour to portfolio

    Athens-based cybersecurity and data protection solutions provider SNSfortech has added SigNet by Armour, a UK-based communications solutions company, to its portfolio of communications tools for the shipping industry.

  • Inmarsat identifies maritime safety weak spots in analysis of GMDSS alerts

    Inmarsat has published a new report based on an exclusive analysis of Global Maritime Distress and Safety Services (GMDSS) alerts from ships.

  • Move to the cloud to future proof your business, urges Hanseaticsoft MD

    With the maritime industry in constant change due to new regulations and processes, and the COVID-19 pandemic having had a dramatic impact on economies around the world, shipping companies need to stay competitive and plan for their future, says managing director of Hanseaticsoft, Alexander Buchmann. 

    He notes these challenges are leading more shipping companies to move their management processes and systems into the cloud, to optimise their processes and increase efficiencies.

    However, there are still some in companies which are slow to invest in digital systems and software because they do not understand how easy it can be.

    “Going digital can really help maritime companies futureproof their businesses – moving them away from outdated, legacy technology systems to using intuitive and flexible cloud-based solutions to manage their entire fleets," said Buchmann. "Some may get left behind because they are unaware of just how simple it is to move to the cloud. They wrongly assume that changing their software would involve manually transferring all their information and data which would take significant time and money. They worry they may lose vital information especially if data is held in different systems or they may need to allocate extra man hours to get this done."

    “But this isn’t the case. It is a very straightforward process to transfer data from a wide range of older maritime management systems quickly and without staff having to dedicate time doing this. Thanks to a variety of powerful application programme interfaces, or APIs, data can be imported from most maritime systems into a new software solution.

    “As we move through the pandemic, we expect more companies will adopt cloud-based software solutions to streamline their management and operational processes, become more efficient and stay competitive in what could be challenging economic conditions ahead.”

    One of the key benefits of using cloud-based software is that it enables the real-time sharing of information and data. With data accessible in one central place, it breaks down business silos and enables employees to communicate, share information and collaborate easily no matter where they are located.

    Business critical information such as important maritime instructions, crew schedules, payroll data and other key communications can be shared by the team onshore with crews at sea and actioned immediately, ensuring the company is responsive and dynamic and can react to any situation.

    It also supports better data management and analysis which improves business decision making, business performance and success. The cloud facilitates the sharing of data from different sources, which can be transmitted from vessels simply and quickly. Data is synchronised as soon as it is entered into the system and can be accessed immediately by all relevant personnel.

    Hanseaticsoft's maritime software supports shipping operations without additional training. It can be used in the office, on mobile devices, and on ships. Data is securely saved and readily available in the cloud, allowing employees to access the same materials and work processes wherever they are based. 

  • Japan approves Iridium Certus and GMDSS

    Japan's Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) has announced plans to adopt Iridium's Global Maritime Distress and Safety System service (GMDSS) and the Iridium Certus broadband service, following regulatory approval.

  • Inmarsat plans $100m investment in Orchestra communications network

    Inmarsat has unveiled plans for its communications network, Orchestra, that will bring together existing geosynchronous (GEO) satellites with low earth orbit satellites (LEO) and terrestrial 5G into an integrated, high-performance solution.

Joomla SEF URLs by Artio


Register or Login to view even more of our content. Basic registration is free.

Register now

Digital Ship magazine provides the latest information about maritime satellite communications technology, software systems, navigation technology, computer networks, data management and TMSA. It is published ten times a year.


Digital Ship Ltd
Digital Ship - Digital Energy Journal
39-41 North Road
N7 9DP
United Kingdom

Copyright © 2020 Digital Ship Ltd. All rights reserved           Cookie Policy         Privacy Policy