Siem turned to Huddle to solve its document collaboration demands

Siem Shipping manage a global shipping fleet including car carriers, refers and dry bulk.

“The time and cost savings have been huge – Huddle pays for itself!”
Robert Bate, IT Manager, Siem Shipping

Reliable, timely and secure collaboration between offices and from ship to shore are vitally important to business continuity at Siem Shipping. So, with an ever-increasing volume of email and a desire to maintain lean yet secure operating practices, Siem turned to Huddle to solve their document collaboration demands.

 

Solving the Email Problem

“Teams can retrieve the information they need on-demand and without having to sift through a mountain of email.”

Prior to Huddle, email volume was a growing issue for Siem, with some employees receiving thousands of emails per day. Many of Siem’s communications are driven from the regulatory need for ships to share operational reports and the sheer volume of emails only served to overwhelm employee inboxes. “Many of our shipping reports are sent to large groups, and with the size of our shipping fleet that means many people receive thousands of emails with attachments each day.” explained Robert Bate, IT Manager at Siem Shipping. “We are now in the process of transitioning reporting from email into Huddle, which means shoreside teams can retrieve the information they need on-demand and without having to sift through a mountain of email.”

 

Improving Ship to Shore Communications

“Feedback from Captains and their crews during trials has been very positive – they will be able to spend less time writing emails and more time focusing on producing accurate and up-to-date reports.”

In the future, Huddle will also help to drive more efficient ship to shore communications, saving time for crews who have an increasing amount of paperwork to complete for each voyage. Robert explained the plans Siem have for transforming ship to shore communications. “Huddle’s integration with Microsoft Office will allow ship captains to update documents even when working offline, safe in the knowledge that documents will sync straight to Huddle automatically once a connection is available. Feedback from Captains and their crews during trials has been very positive – they will be able to spend less time writing emails and more time focusing on producing accurate and up-to-date reports.”

 

Streamlining Global Expansion

Siem’s operations are growing at a rapid pace, so Robert’s challenge has been to minimize disruption during expansion activities, including office relocations. “We previously relied on file servers located on-premise to store employee, team and operational documentation. Office moves were time-consuming, and could result in down-time for employees while servers were relocated. With the implementation of Huddle, files are now stored securely in the cloud, so everyone can continue working wherever they are. We’re also saving huge amounts of time in the IT team as we don’t have to worry about moving hardware around or migrating data between servers.”

 

Securing Collaboration with External Suppliers and Contractors

Each new ship Siem constructs involves multiple external suppliers and contractors, so careful planning and co-ordination of activities is required to ensure completion dates and budgets are met. “Email just wasn’t practical for exchanging the large volume of documentation needed for each new project, and, because some of the documentation was sensitive in nature, we wanted a more secure way of working with our external suppliers and contractors.”

“Implementing Huddle was a no-brainer.”

“For new ship construction, implementing Huddle was a no-brainer. Access control for external team members is simple, and the granular permissions ensure that people only have access to the information they are supposed to see.”

 

Maintaining a Lean, Efficient IT Operation

Robert explained in more detail the decision to go with Huddle. “We initially considered SharePoint to try and solve our email and file server challenges, but that would have required expensive development resource. After evaluating a SharePoint implementation by one of our partners, we decided it would be too costly to build and overly complex to maintain. Unlike SharePoint, Huddle allows teams to manage their own Workspaces and permissions with minimal support from my team.”

The transition to Huddle’s cloud-based solution has also allowed Robert to do away with on-premise servers. “Getting rid of our physical hardware has been a revelation for the team.” Explained Robert. “We don’t have to worry about server software patches, hardware upgrades and VPN access. The time and cost savings have been huge – Huddle pays for itself!”

“Huddle are different from many other software vendors – they really care about the success of our project.”

Robert concluded by highlighting the support Siem have received from Huddle’s Customer Success team in onboarding Huddle into their business. “The initial setup experience was superb. Huddle really helped to drive excitement with new users, which has resulted in rapid adoption across the business. Huddle are different from many other software vendors – they really care about the success of our project.”

 


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