SHIPPING giant Maersk says it is to boost its remote container management by means of a virtual assistant named “Captain Peter”.
Testing is said to be underway with select customers, with technical improvements to simplify RCM platform processes.
Maersk head of global reefer management Anne-Sophie Zerlang Karlsen said their goal was for the RCM product to look and feel like a “favourite smartphone app”.
“There is still a lot of paper work and difficult processes in global trade,” Ms Zerlang Karlsen said.
“Captain Peter will help take care of some of this complexity, by seamlessly engaging with the customer from end to end in the supply chain.”
To start with, Captain Peter is to follow some basic rules, sending new information via customers’ preferred channel, for example, text or e-mail, on container temperature and atmosphere conditions, as well as a journey timeline.
Should any deviations be observed, or the shipment be delayed, Captain Peter will notify the customer.
Once the container has arrived, Captain Peter is to check on its state and send an update to the customer.
In time, customers are expected to receive information configured to their specific needs.
According to Maersk, the RCM technology makes a reefer’s location, temperature, humidity and power status easily available to the customer.
If issues are detected, the customer can alert his supplier or have the shipment checked by local surveyors, potentially saving money.
“With the number of active users of the RCM platform constantly growing, the aspiration is for Captain Peter to gather enough information to be able to predict potential cargo damage and provide configuration suggestions before containers are shipped,” Ms Zerlang Karlsen said.
Maersk launched RCM for customers in September 2017.
Today, more than 2300 customers are reported to have signed up for the RCM solution, more than 70% of Maersk’s reefer volume.