Jade first to address weight issue
The countdown is on. Less than two months remain until the International Maritime Organization’s new container weighing regulations take effect. As of 1 July 2016, the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention requires, as a condition for loading a packed container onto a ship for export, that the packed container has a Verified Gross Mass (VGM).
Yet despite this impending deadline many terminal operators globally have decided to bury their heads in the sand and will not be ready when the updated maritime treaty comes into force. Whether that is due to disorganization, blind optimism that shippers will take full responsibility for container weighing, or that their software does not have the functionality to record VGM, it was not an option for Jade Software.
Since March this year, Jade’s Terminal Operating System (TOS), Master Terminal has been ready to capture a container’s VGM, making Jade one of, if not the first TOS vendor to introduce this functionality into their software.
Master Terminal can now record a container’s VGM using in-machine technology or weighbridges. Terminal operators also have the option to manually enter a pre-recorded container VGM and mark it as verified.
Paying heed to Ship-planning Message Design Group (SMDG) guidelines and working alongside ship operators, we have updated Master Terminal to enable sending and receiving the VGM of a container in a variety of accepted EDI message formats. The new VERMAS EDI message, which communicates a container’s VGM, authorized person, and responsible party, is also now part of Master Terminal EDI functionality.
At Jade, we pride ourselves on innovation, and our development process differs from other vendors in our industry. While many of our competitors update their software on a yearly basis, we deliver monthly releases. Our clients benefit from this agility. It means we can quickly and easily introduce features like VGM processing, so Master Terminal users can benefit from new functionalities within a matter of weeks, not months or years.
With our agile monthly release process, we are able to work alongside our customers and continually enhance Master Terminal to meet their changing needs. Or as our developers like to put it “we listen”. It may seem like a simple statement, but the fact is that many ports have to make do with a generic TOS that they are shoehorned into. They receive software updates infrequently and don’t have a say in what is included in those updates.
So while our clients will be up and running processing and recording container weights, a service that they can ultimately charge shippers for, many of our competitor’s ports will find themselves having to decide whether to record VGM manually, a laborious and time-consuming ordeal, or to purchase additional third-party software, a costly and inelegant solution that often throws up difficulties when trying to interface with existing systems.