Crews averaging five hours per day using digital tools for work – report

Modern vessel crews are using digital tools for five hours a day on average while working at sea, according to a newly published research report.

Launched by Inmarsat Maritime, the Digital Wave: Transforming vessels into floating offices and remote homes report explores the importance of ‘always-on’ onboard connectivity in an environment where ships and their crew are becoming increasingly reliant on digital technology.

89% of the seafarers surveyed for the report rely on connectivity for both work and leisure, with the remaining 11% only allowed to access the internet for work purposes. In addition to the five hours of use per day on average while working, 82% said they also use digital tools to communicate with friends and family in their spare time.

The survey results revealed that, overall, crew see connectivity loss as having a more significant impact on their leisure time than on their working practices. The report goes on to examine data management practices based on five supporting factors: a common data language, connectivity for both operations and crew well-being, security and safety in communications access, and a willingness to share data.

“To fully harness the benefits and steer clear of the potential challenges brought by shipping’s new digital wave, fast and reliable connectivity with consistent global coverage – including in hotspots and remote locations – is indispensable,” said Ben Palmer, President, Inmarsat Maritime.

“Inmarsat is committed to supporting safe and efficient vessel operations and crew welfare, delivering the certainty and trust that maritime and offshore enterprise customers expect from a reliable service provider.”

Compiled by maritime technology research firm Thetius from interviews and survey data, the report can be downloaded here.

Share this story

About the Author

Picture of Rob O'Dwyer
Rob O'Dwyer

Rob is Chief Network Officer and one of the founders of Smart Maritime Network. He also serves as Chairman of the Smart Maritime Council. Rob has worked in the maritime technology sector since 2005, managing editorial for a range of leading publications in the transport and logistics sector. Get in touch by email by clicking here, or on LinkedIn by clicking here.

Further Reading

News Archive