A Global Port Authority Streamlines Operations with a Digital Solution
With its new single window system, the agency has an efficient vessel for maritime processes.
A leading port authority hampered by inefficiencies needed to streamline operations across its multiple ports. It identified an ambitious digital solution—a new, more robust port community system (PCS)—and enlisted our help in creating it.
PortAuthorityCo’s* complex processes often caused berthing and unloading delays. Port procedures were manual and clunky, and communication among port stakeholders was not centralized. The agency sought our enterprise technology and digital transformation expertise to design and prototype a single window platform that could optimize maritime logistics.
To shape the target solution, we underwent a thorough three-step process. First, we conducted a gap analysis. With an eye to where digitalization could make an impact, we worked across the entire maritime ecosystem to evaluate its current state. This helped PortAuthorityCo identify pain points and the interventions that would improve information flow, digital security, and operational efficiency. For example, cargo loading lists were manually submitted to customs—a process that could be automated in the target state. Similarly, the new system would retrieve stored data, eliminating the inefficiencies created by duplicate data entries.
Then, using these recommended improvements, we revamped customer journeys for several stakeholders. This work entailed evaluating day-in-the-life tasks for roles such as shipping agents and customs brokers, then outlining their objectives, expectations, and key digital touchpoints within the new system.
Best practices also provided a guidepost: As a final step, we benchmarked single window systems used in similar ports and conducted an ambition workshop to reconcile proposed solutions and global standards to ensure that the go-forward strategy was in alignment with the agency’s broader goals.
Through this exercise, we helped PortAuthorityCo scale up from 46 to 150 digitalized services to include in the port community platform. We then worked together to craft a business model to implement the digital transformation and keep it afloat. This included evaluating different business contracts and value sharing models, along with revenue estimates for varying scenarios.
With a detailed plan for the business and technical and data architecture, we helped the authority shortlist vendors to implement the PCS. To ensure the platform’s success, we prioritized change management, including the partnership with the new vendor, and collaborated on the design of the platform’s new governance, operating model, and work processes.
The new platform tripled the agency’s digitalized services and quadrupled its digital touchpoints, all while improving cybersecurity. With more processes consolidated online, the system improved data exchange and, as a result, sped up decision-making. Port stakeholders—from shipping agents to customs brokers and trucking companies—could more easily go about their jobs, ultimately enabling a seamless customer experience for all maritime players.