Danish start-up heads to foreign waters with Shell contract
How can a chatbot prevent accidents at sea? The Danish start-up Scoutbase has just landed a contract with Shell UK after a successful pilot project in which they gathered feedback on the well-being of the crew on board through their chatbot. The ambition is to reduce human error through an ongoing insight into human factors such as sleep, well-being and work pressure from the perspective of the seafarers.
About 96% of accidents at sea involve human errors, but so far no systematic attempt has been made to trace the causes through continuous data collection like in e.g. operations and equipment. At the same time, the procedures for crew members have grown in scope in attempts to ensure proper workflows and place responsibility. But the underlying human factors has not attracted much attention in the shipping business' safety work until now.
"It is quite shocking that data from the state of the crew has not been systematically included in the work on maritime safety. This is probably because it seems difficult to quantify and analyze the human factors,” says Bosiljka Kozomara from Scoutbase.
Bosiljka Kozomara has just joined Scoutbase as Chief Commercial Officer, and she comes directly from the customer. She has worked at Shell UK for almost 10 years and followed Scoutbase since 2019, when the companies met at a conference on digital innovation.
"It is extremely important to prevent serious accidents at sea, because they cost human lives and cause massive economic losses and long-lasting consequences for the environment. Therefore, I look forward to creating an increased focus on the prevention of accidents in shipping in my new role at Scoutbase," continues Bosiljka Kozomara.
Data driven insights as a growth engine
Through KMD Ventures, the large Danish IT company KMD has invested in the maritime start-up because they believe that Scoutbase has developed a truly unique product with the potential to revolutionize maritime safety.
"Data-driven insights can easily provide value to the areas we traditionally think of as soft – e.g. HR and working with human factors in the security work. Our investment in and support to Scoutbase when entering the market is indicative of KMD's increasing commitment to data driven insights in organizations. Even in areas you've never used data in before," says CEO of KMD Ventures A/S Niklas Marschall.
In KMD, data driven solutions are a strategic priority business area. The strategic business unit Data Driven Solutions is one of KMD's growth engines, and it is a goal to grow these solutions across different industries in both the public and private segments.
- Scoutbase was founded in 2017 and has from the start collaborated and tested with DFDS, which is currently testing Scoutbase on a number of their ships.
- The tool itself works by prompting a chatbot message every other day when a crew member logs on to the ship's WiFi with their smartphone.
- The chatbot asks a few questions about the employee's current experiences with physical and mental work environment on board, which they can answer in just 20 seconds.
- The analytical part of the tool continuously collects this data from the crew and illustrates it on a dashboard that can be used by the organization for monitoring and supporting decisions that affect the safety work of the navy. Read more at scoutbase.com.