Thanks to a group of dedicated SVITZER employees, the development
and roll out of our new global operations system, HELM, already looks
set to become a great success in one very important area: making the
workdays easier and more efficient for crew and operations.

HELM is our new global operating system, covering tariff setting and maintenance, booking, log book information and invoicing. It is being implemented in SVITZER offices as well as on all tugs, starting with Scandinavia, Amsterdam, Portugal and the UK, with Australasia, Americas and AMEA to follow. So far experiences and reactions have been overwhelmingly positive. By entering all relevant information and actions like port, vessel, billing account, job type and duration into the system right away, paperwork is eliminated between crews and operators, and finance can invoice immediately once the job is done. This makes for more efficient workdays with far less duplicate work. In addition, the system has improved communication between tugs and operators. All in all, HELM so far seems to translate straight into improved job satisfaction.

The system has been test-driven by Portuguese SVITZER crews, and their can-do and engaged approach to the task has helped make the system very easy to use. Rui Rolo, Operations Department, Portugal: “The system is very user-friendly and intuitive. Some crew members had never touched a laptop before, and they have now become regular and happy users of the system. This has also made them interested in learning to use other computer software like Outlook and so forth.” Immediate success HELM was first rolled out in Gothenburg, Sweden, and only a week after its launch we were able to gather the first enthusiastic reactions from employees both at sea and on land.

Tug reactions:
• “I was sceptical at first, but after only one day of use, I was convinced.”
• “I like the fact we can see the orders in real time.”
Onshore reactions:
• “This is clearly a significant step in the right direction.”
• “The Deal Manager is a magical tool.”

The new system is the result of years of focused effort and strong teamwork across SVITZER regions and functions, without which the success had not been as substantial. The project team has made sure to involve all regions to ensure a maximum of knowledge sharing from every corner of the world. In addition, the active participation from employees working with the old systems, set to be phased out by HELM, has also been invaluable as they have translated their functions and strong points to the new system. Changing work routines and embracing a new IT system is no easy task. But HELM is already a success due to the combined efforts of all SVITZER colleagues to evolve with the change.

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