In an exclusive interview to SAFETY4SEA, Mr. Will Ellison co-founder of seaV platform introduces to us the benefits for users, highlighting that, in essence, this tool aims to create a stronger link between the shore and sea.
This is something that is seriously lacking in the industry, Mr. Ellison notes and thus seaV aspires to become the platform for seafaring support initiatives and improving networking in the shipping community, whilst gathering valuable data about the industry.
SAFETY4SEA: How does seaV work? What information is available to users of the SeaV platform?
Will Ellison: seaV takes the basic details from your discharge book and combines them with detailed AIS data records to create a complete picture of your sailing experience. This includes the ports and terminals visited, miles sailed and more detail about the ships you’ve sailed on. Additional features help capture your qualifications and tickets, as well as other significant moments in your seafaring career, helping you build the most detailed seafaring CV possible.
S4S: What are your goals & aspirations with the launch of SeaV?
W.E.: seaV is primarily a tool to create the best possible seafaring CV. But we also see it as an opportunity to create an online community for seafaring, much like LinkedIn is to the business world. This can be a significant force for good, providing a platform for seafaring support initiatives and improving networking in the shipping community. Importantly it can also create a stronger link between the shore and sea, something that is seriously lacking in the industry, by allowing shore side professionals to follow the lives of the seafarers and ships they work with.
S4S: What are the benefits of this platform for seafarers?
W.E.: There are a lot of challenges facing seafarers but finding the right work shouldn’t be one of them. Two things will help; a more transparent job market, and a better way to capture experience. In a world of constantly changing technologies and trading requirements seaV is a unique tool to help capture experience, and we are already building tools to help seafarers, recruiters and crew managers find the right people for the right jobs.
S4S: What makes SeaV different from other platforms?
W.E.: seaV is the first platform to use AIS data to automatically enrich a seafarer’s experience record. And we have only just started – there are lots of ideas in development which will capture more valuable detail. Secondly seaV is built for seafarers first. It is not a platform for shipping companies to pass on their crew. This is important because it means that the service is dedicated to serving seafarers’ needs first.
S4S: How will the focus on crew welfare, along with the emerging smart technologies and industry’s challenges influence SeaV platform? What are your thoughts for the platform within the next 5 years?
W.E.: It’s really encouraging to see so many technologies and initiatives aimed at helping seafarer welfare. Our hope is that seaV becomes a focal point for these initiatives; charities can promote their services and connect with the seafarers they work with through seaV; training providers can integrate with seaV to keep track of progress and find new clients; organisations can use the unique data generated by seaV to analyse and understand the real working lives of seafarers and identify opportunities to improve the way crew are organised.
S4S: How can data sharing and digital technologies be leveraged to improve maritime community through this new platform?
W.E.: Shipping is very fragmented and a lot of initiatives struggle to reach all countries, sectors, or organisation types. The one common factor across the whole industry is the seafarers, who despite their diverse backgrounds, share common experiences and challenges. If we can achieve our goal of becoming a focal point for the seafaring community, seaV can become the platform to help these initiatives reach their full potential, whilst gathering valuable data about the industry which simply doesn’t exist at the moment.
S4S: Are you planning to add more features for the users of this platform in the short and/or long term?
W.E.: Absolutely, we have only just begun! In the short term we want to maximise the features that help seafarers record their experience and share it with their professional network. At the same time we are working with charities, shipping companies and classification societies to design tools that will help them connect with seafarers through seaV.
S4S: If you could change one thing across the industry from your perspective, what this would be and why?
W.E.: From a global perspective, reducing emissions is paramount. But more locally we want to improve connectivity across the industry. Declining seafarer welfare is a huge problem, and the first step to fixing this is to bring it to the forefront of the industry’s consciousness. Having worked within the shipping industry ashore myself, I’ve seen the significant lack of interaction between seafarers and the people making commercial decisions that directly impact their lives. seaV addresses this shortfall.
S4S: What is your key message to industry stakeholders with regards to SeaV platform?
W.E.: Please get involved! We want seaV to be your platform. There has never been a better opportunity to connect with the seafaring community and use the tools seaV offers to improve the relationship between sea and shore. Anyone can sign up for free, and we would love to hear from you to discuss how seaV can help your organisation.
The views presented hereabove are only those of the author and do not necessarily those of SAFETY4SEA and are for information sharing and discussion purposes only.
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