Previously a user, Grégoire joined the DEEP Blue team in 2017 after having been yacht manager & junior broker for 3 years. He testifies through our questions on the changes that are taking place in the management of superyachts and their crew members over the past 3 years.
Q: What are the main changes facing management companies and yachts that are self-managed in the processes and tools they use?
What comes to mind first is the growing desire of managers and captains to bring together as many departments as possible on a single platform where everyone could connect and use the tool according to their position and responsibilities on board or in the office.
Q: In your opinion, where does this desire to integrate such a tool come from?
Yachts are getting bigger and bigger and technically more complex. In addition, it is also necessary to consider the human factor, with an ever-increasing number of crews and requiring new skills and training.
The number of tasks distributed between departments is also increasing, hence the desire to group task reports on a single platform in order to better control or verify what is happening on board.
Q: What are the major or minor changes you noticed when following up new DEEP Blue users?
For yachts that already had processes in place, we are seeing rapid progress in the establishment of new methodologies leading to considerable time savings for all departments.
For yachts that had no or few tools, the change is radical although it is gradual thanks to our software training methods.
The Captain or Manager re organizes his tasks and time thanks to a better distribution of work between the departments and the management company.
The benefits of using a management tool that brings together all the departments result in a time saving in the search for information or increased efficiency in the execution of preventive maintenance, thanks in particular to the upstream planning of recurring tasks related to the maintenance of equipment on board.
The exchange of information is structured and fluid, allowing data to be extracted in the form of financial reports, maintenance history, hours of work/rest summary or any other type of data to be used in the future.
Q: Which yachting professionals would be interested in using DEEP Blue or a similar tool? What would be the direct benefits for these professions?
At the risk of surprising you, as far as the operational aspect is concerned, absolutely everyone.
After having shown the advantages in use for crew members, let’s take a look at the Managers or Technical / Project Managers.
By connecting to the chosen single platform, the manager has access to the state of the yacht at the very moment. Balance of bank accounts, status of mandatory documents, maintenance carried out and due, latest reports related to safety on board or any event scheduled by the crew or management. A structured and easy-to-use database will allow managers to focus on the tasks that require the most attention.
I am also thinking of shipyards and project managers during new construction. They can follow the preventive maintenance recommended by the manufacturers, all this remotely from DEEP Blue or a similar platform. Especially during warranty periods, when the yacht can make its requests for support through the tool. It is easy for the shipyard representative to extract the maintenance performed or in some cases, prove a failure, relieving itself of any responsibility.
Q: Can you give us a concrete example or does the installation of software such as DEEP Blue bring an undeniable added value?
Of course. Let’s take the example of a yacht at the end of its construction, say 6 months before delivery to its owner.
We have followed and assisted in several 60m+ yacht constructions in the implementation of a documentary and technical structure in partnership with the shipyard, the project manager and the chief engineer.
With regard to this aspect, we imported a database of more than 2,000 technical documents (drawings, user manuals, maintenance procedures, certificates, etc.) organised in a customised library.
Add our assistance to the chief engineer in programming preventive maintenance, thanks to the list of equipment produced by the shipyard, and you get a PMS (Planned Maintenance System) ready before delivery.
As soon as the equipment is used, and depending on the frequency, DEEP Blue or equivalent software will automatically trigger maintenance tasks. The engineers in charge will only have to connect to their DEEP Blue to find the tasks due this day/week and rely what have been done so far.
A preventive maintenance schedule in place at the time of delivery will ensure that, even in the event of a frequent change of chief engineers, maintenance will continue to be triggered in accordance with the procedures put in place at the start.
The value of the yacht is preserved as soon as it leaves the shipyard.
Any broker, manager or captain knows that the real value of a yacht on the second-hand market is the ability to produce a flawless maintenance history with reports, photos, quotes…
Otherwise, the price asked by the seller can be negotiated down, sometimes up to 30%!
There is no better time than the construction period of the yacht to set up these processes and thus anticipate unexpected events in order to preserve its value but even more importantly, the safety of the crew and passengers.
”Some shipowners may wonder about the need to invest 8K€ - 11K€ in operational management software whether or not there is a company ofGrégoire HARDISales & Support Manager @ DEEP Blue Soft
Management above the Yacht. Without Management company involve, the question of leaving the crew without software for operational management does not arise, I think.
The investment is largely justified by the considerable added value that a software like DEEP Blue will bring to the crew, the owner, and of course to the value of the asset (the Yacht) over the long term.