Case studies that show the value of digital transformation in maritime

Case studies that show the value of digital transformation in maritime

Jack Gill

9 May 2022 - 4 min read

Digital Transformation
Case studies that show the value of digital transformation in maritime

The maritime industry has seen seismic growth when it comes to implementing digital solutions. The digital products and services market in this industry exceeded estimates by 18% last year, with growth rates now estimated to be running three years ahead of those predicted before the pandemic. 

Overlapping with utilities and agriculture, the maritime industry is equally concerned with decarbonising its operations where possible in the long-term. Digital tools can significantly contribute to this decarbonisation journey by providing efficient alternatives to traditional processes. 

Internet of Things (IoT), for example, enables ship application systems to be controlled remotely via digital transmissions between fleets. Operating this way not only makes procedures safer, but it also reduces fuel consumption; this, in turn, means fewer carbon emissions through reduced operational costs.

Cloud, Blockchain and Artificial Intelligence technology all offer similar benefits by innovating once manual processes and granting companies access to large amounts of business-critical data. The potential benefits of digitalisation has led to an accelerated number of organisations who are committing to digital transformation projects.  

Here are two maritime organisations who have leveraged digital solutions to improve areas of their operations. 


Danish shipping company Maersk — the world’s largest shipping container company — have undergone drastic digital transformation projects, particularly, tied to improving logistics and data management. 

Utilising AI-powered data analytics, blockchain and cloud technology, the organisation has been able to innovate traditional supply chain processes. The company established a dedicated Digital Innovation Team in June 2019 who were committed to a range of digital solutions like AI-powered container packing and bespoke API connections. 

That same year Spot was launched as an online platform that simplifies and enhances the booking process for containers. The process of calculating and booking rates used to be lengthy for shippers, with the company citing overbookings of 30% - often leading to rolling of  cargo. With this new platform in place, shippers can now click and book online, or even from their mobile devices. Calculations of rates are fixed at the time of booking, and a guarantee of cargo loading prevents the possibility of cargo being rolled.

In the weeks following the platform's launch, bookings increased nearly 50%, indicating both the need and the willingness of consumers to use these online tools. With markets constantly changing, Maersk Spot continues to provide an effective way to organise shipping activity for businesses across the world. 

Specialist Marine Consultants (SMC)

Specialist Marine Consultants (SMC)  is another company who has seen the benefits of digital transformation in the maritime industry. A global leader in offshore solutions, SMC provides a number of essential maritime services such as HSEQ and marine consultancy, marine coordination and offshore project management. 

To accommodate their growth strategy, SMC identified the need to redevelop their legacy systems to be able to improve existing processes and implement new capabilities to support growth plans. Updating these systems was a process of centralising business-critical data into a new customised portal that allows them to track the status of assets at sea, like turbines, substations and vessels. 

Using this online portal, the marine co-ordinators now have real-time visibility into the status of these assets, allowing them to assess any outstanding issues, exclusion zones, and build status. 

SMC can also utilise the platform to implement effective daily management of personnel moving between locations for different tasks, such as building, maintenance and review. In managing personnel transfers, the platform also contains reporting functions for factors such as distance travelled, fuel consumption, passenger transfer and number of 'push ons'.

Overall, the platform has improved essential business processes for SMC and has supported the optimal facilitation of transfers across some of the biggest offshore wind farms around the world. By elevating its existing service with an effective system, the company is now able to provide end-to-end excellent customer service. In this way, the system has made it possible for them to deliver a better service with a wider reach, and thus contribute to the UK's transition to a lower carbon economy.

Turning of the Tide

Among the many digital transformations underway within the maritime industry, we've shown just a couple of examples. We have demonstrated in both case studies the positive impacts that digital solutions have had on these companies' operations, with benefits including improved performance and capacity for growth. 

At Audacia, we are always looking to provide innovative new digital solutions to businesses looking to take that first step into a new, digital future. Drawing on our experience delivering high-quality digital transformation strategies, we can offer solutions that are highly scalable and performant - in line with your business needs. 

Want to find out how your business can benefit from digital transformation? Speak with us today on 0113 543 1300, or email at

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Jack Gill manages digital content at Audacia. He writes on a number of industry topics, including technology trends, leadership and digital transformation.