All other books are digital – why are your logbooks still on paper?

All other books are digital – why are your logbooks still on paper?

November 1, 2023
Time to read: 8 minutes
Kongsberg Digital

In your personal life, you probably receive electronic invoices and read articles (like this one) online. You can instantly read an e-book from anywhere without having to carry it around. Why then, do your crews still have to go through the trouble of using – and storing – paper logbooks? And with the availability of digital logbooks, why do you still need to suffer the costs, accountability issues and risk of damage to paper logbooks? Learn why and how to overcome the barriers to going digital and leverage digital logbooks as a low-hanging fruit on your digitalisation journey.

Top 4 problems with paper logbooks

Paper logbooks can be a dead weight for your ships in many ways:

Unnecessary costs: New logbooks for each ship each year, or even more frequently – you do the math. And what about the environmental impact of using so much paper.

Accountability issues: What if an incorrect or false entry is made, by mistake or on purpose (such as to cover up errors or avoid penalties)? Or what if an entry is illegible? It’s difficult to audit and verify paper logbooks.

Lost productivity: How much time do your crews spend making entries in paper logbooks? Manually searching for and adding this data to other systems can also be unnecessarily time-consuming.

Physical damage: What if a logbook is damaged or lost in harsh weather conditions – or even intentionally discarded at sea to avoid inspection or to cover up misconduct?

These paper logbook problems may have seemed like a necessary evil in the past, but now digital logbooks are reliable, readily available and easy to deploy. Sticking with paper logbooks could sink your fleet’s competitiveness as competitors begin to level up with digitalisation. By going digital, you can join the race to enhance accuracy, make data management more efficient and contribute to a more sustainable way of keeping records.

Dispelling 5 common myths of maritime digitalisation

Digital logbooks are a great first step, but there is so much more to maritime digitalisation. The right digital tools and infrastructure can empower you to cut fuel consumption significantly and continuously, improving both your financial performance and IMO compliance.

The possibilities of digitalisation are endless, so what is keeping you from starting or moving forward on this journey? If you thought one of the following obstacles was a showstopper, think again. We’ll show you why they are only myths:

  • Digitalisation inevitably requires high upfront hardware investments and docking the entire fleet for installation
  • Digital logbooks don’t require any major hardware investments. You only need a software license and a connected device like a laptop. You’ll be up and running in no time.
  • Digitalisation requires rare skills and lots of training
  • User-friendly digital tools such as industry-leading digital logbook software is easy to use and securely available from anywhere via the cloud. You can run a pilot project on a few ships first and then spread knowledge and experience throughout your fleet.
  • The cloud is not secure and maintaining cloud infrastructure is too complex
  • Actually, when implemented correctly, the latest cloud security is far more secure than traditional local networks. Do what you do best while a digitalisation partner manages the infrastructure for you.
  • Digital solutions may not be compliant
  • Digital logbook software and other apps are available that are type approved in accordance with IMO, Marpol, SOLAS and flag state requirements
  • Use multiple software for insights
  • One place to gather data & analyze with flexible view

Kickstart maritime digitalisation with digital logbooks

Digital logbooks present a way to overcome digitalisation barriers and are a great low-hanging fruit. Digital logbooks also open new avenues for remote monitoring and management, data access and search, and data security. Via integrations with sensors and other systems, you can drive improvements in accuracy and time savings.

Learn more about digital logbooks.

About the author

All other books are digital – why are your logbooks still on paper?

Kongsberg Digital

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