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What the Yachting Community Has Been Missing: Technology
The Distinct Lack of Tech within the Yachting Community and How Things Will Change

April 17, 2015

Software is rapidly becoming an integral part of almost everything we do. From doing business, socializing, professional networking, and finding restaurants to booking tickets, finding a cab, downloading music, or buying gifts—there’s an app for everything. Software has transformed business models and massively impacted users’ lives in many positive ways. In some cases, it is hard to imagine how we managed to live without it. Previous methods were far from efficient.

While society continues to leverage technology to transform operations and implement automation for improved customer engagement across many industries, the maritime services industry, surprisingly, still remains largely untouched.

Service delivery is currently disorganized. It goes without saying that yacht ownership and maintenance is a complex affair requiring substantial management. Owners want to make sure their boats are well maintained so they can enjoy using them for many years and get good returns when they decide to sell. Dealers are consistently hunting for ways to deliver a better buying experience and improved after-sale service to buyers. Similarly, captains and managers want to ensure that their clients enjoy the ownership of their boats to the fullest and that boats stay in great condition. Builders want to deliver high-quality products to their clients so they keep coming back.

Despite all parties striving for the highest level of service, the reality is that it coordination among them is often found to be completely absent. There is a distinct lack of tools and resources that maritime service professionals can use to facilitate communication and collaboration, resulting in cumbersome processes riddled with inefficiency and, ultimately, client dissatisfaction.   

The maritime industry needs tech to improve customer engagement. The majority of dealers use some type of enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship planning (CRM) software. However, in an industry where clients seek high quality, comfort, and above all, peace of mind, these resources alone do not adequately enable dealers (and other service providers) to fully reach out to boat buyers and deliver last-mile after-sale service.

Surveyors are also an important part of the yacht owner’s team, armed with specialized knowledge to sniff out issues and deliver their findings in an unbiased report. But the quality of a surveyor’s report depends not only on his skill and experience, but also the tools he uses to perform the survey. With so much responsibility, it is critical that surveyors have the necessary resources to execute their work as efficiently as possible, reaping the benefits of current tracking and automation technologies in addition to their traditional tools.

How tech changes things. With the right technological tools, client engagement and service delivery can be massively improved. Given the complexity of purchasing and managing a yacht, it is clear that a common, collaborative platform for communication is needed, one where dealers, owners, captains, builders, surveyors and contractors can fully coordinate their interdependent tasks and operations. This would vastly streamline the various processes, allowing much greater efficiency. The result, ultimately, would be a much higher standard of service for boat owners.

Is such a tool currently available? If so, how does it work? Fortunately, it is. VesselWise, a cloud-based application, was created to manage surveys and warranty issues for every type of vessel. It enables boat owners and yacht industry professionals to collaborate in real time to identify, target and resolve every kind of vessel-related issue. The idea behind VesselWise is to revolutionize marine management by bringing mobility and collaboration to an industry largely neglected by modern technology.

In a variety of ways VesselWise helps users simplify boat ownership, maintenance, service and warranty management.

  •     Owners can improve the longevity and resale value of their boats by operating them better and maintaining them more efficiently.
  •     Captains can better serve their clients (boat owners and guests on board) by dealing with issues quickly with minimal distraction from their main responsibilities.
  •     Yacht management companies can manage their fleets more efficiently with a highly organized task and operations management system.
  •     Dealers can improve after-sale support and service delivery to buyers, while also improving their operational efficiency, including being able liaise with builders, warranty managers and surveyors more effectively. They can also help improve the new-build process by acting as a linchpin between builders and boat owners.
  •     Surveyors can execute their surveys in a highly organized and efficient manner, bill their clients directly, centrally manage all their payments and various types of invoices, communicate clearly with subcontractors and coordinate with owners more effectively.
  •     Builders can improve their new-build process by getting direct feedback from owners, dealers, surveyors, captains and managers about vessel-related issues and different types of owner requirements.

With the goal of making warranty management and service coordination hassle-free for everyone involved in the industry, VesselWise brings a much-needed technology solution to maritime services professionals. Ultimately, it prevents boat owners from wasting time and energy worrying about getting issues with their vessels fixed, freeing them to fully enjoy ownership.

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