The container terminal industry is entering a new era. An era where profit margins will be reduced under pressure from large shipping line alliances and huge investments will be made so terminals can handle the largest vessels and the limited volume growth that expected in the foreseeable future. The means that container terminals need to become more efficient and effective and offer a compelling product to their customers. A big part of operational improvement lies in business intelligence: creating better control over the cargo flow across the terminal, getting more insight in what is going to happen, and getting grip on the uncertainties.
IS A BETTER TRAINED WORKFORCE THE ANSWER?
Although there is a market of tools that can support “intelligence”, there is also much to be said for a skilled and well-trained workforce. A workforce needs to be able to plan ahead, analyses, quantify and decide, rather than fire-fight (something that often occurs in terminals). A thorough game plan- needs to start with a well-organized DMAIC (define, measure, analyses, improve, control) cycle, that is internalized in the day to day operation. How can we prepare the workforce better, and train them to deal with optimization under uncertainty? The answer, in our view, lies in gamification. Gamification is creating 'near to live' training circumstances through simulation, and combining them with the real IT environments people have to deal with.