InterManager, the international trade association for the world’s in-house and third party ship managers, has once again placed quality at the top of its agenda by pledging to work with industry stakeholders as well as governments and flag state administrations to highlight the importance of management best practices in the day-to-day running of the world’s ships.
A meeting of the association’s Executive Committee expressed a recommitment to management best practices onboard ship and ashore and called on the industry to work together to instill a culture of agreed quality management and operation that was above and beyond mandatory legislated standards.
This could cover a multitude of issues such as how to manage a ship efficiently and safely; how to use management best practice to deal with the scourge of global piracy, or even how to deal with daily tasks such as waste disposal onboard ship and ashore.
Gerardo Borromeo, President of InterManager, said InterManager always made it a point of encouraging its members to review their own internal processes as part of this continual process of improvement.
He said: “Ship owners and managers can sometimes find themselves in a situation they don’t know how to deal with and so are unable to provide the necessary guidance to their crew members. This can lead to the crew taking unnecessary short cuts and in those instances, the situation can go from bad to worse.”
“The improper practice of discharging waste overboard, for example, is partly related to the need for stricter discipline and adherence to best practices in ship operations. While this may have something to do with the management and training culture in a company, from whatever sector, it can also link back to the ship design itself. Vessels need adequate waste storage facilities onboard ship as well as being able to dispose of waste at available reception facilities when they reach port, ” he said. “So what is the management best practice in this instance, and why isn’t it always being followed?” he asked.
A sustainable and highly competent crew is essential to shipping’s future and the industry must work harder to engender a quality culture that extends right to the heart of the way its sea-based and shore-based workforce undertakes its tasks. “Our crew must be respected as the global maritime professionals we want them to be, ” Mr Borromeo said.
“While shipping has been steeped in rich traditions of the past, today’s managers have to strive to manage their ships even better. We recognise there are inherent challenges in the way business is run but by bringing it into the open and working together, we can better educate the industry, ” Mr Borromeo said.