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The 3 most common challenges with evaluating big data in maritime

Probably the most common challenge we discuss with users and buyers of maritime data services is the time, effort and resource is takes to evaluate the range of available solutions, of which nowadays there are many.

From having the right people with the right skills to the cost of operational disruptions, we tried capture the 3 most common challenges we hear from the MDAI network:

1. Access to Skilled Personnel 

In an industry with an aggressive push for digitization, competition for skills is commensurately high. Good Analysts and Data Scientists are expensive, and will often have a wide remit of responsibilities, including the evaluation of existing and new datasets.

Some Maritime Data such as Vessel and Ownership Data require deep industry expertise to understand the important nuances in a suppliers approach, as contrary to popular belief, we still haven’t agreed what ship is what.

If a business doesn’t have the sort of skilled personnel needed to conduct thorough and extensive evaluations, purchasing decisions are tough to make and the risk of a misplaced investment increases.

In our experience, this creates a barrier to entry for small/medium size organizations looking to utilize big data and analytics.

2. Opportunity Costs

Should a buyer have access to skilled personnel then the question becomes the cost of redeploying them.

If all of your analytical resources are tied up on important projects, it’s likely that the assessment of your incumbent service/solution get’s delayed until the following year and your existing contract(s) renewed. Understandable.

The opportunity costs then extend to those incurred by not optimizing your solution providers.

3. Processing power 

Talent is not the only factor in evaluating data services. A company’s access to compute power and availability also has a huge impact on a businesses ability to conduct thorough testing.

Maritime Data can be big and tricky.

Some vessel tracking data providers produce north of 300m positions a day and can require an enormous amount of work to process prior to being ready for compassion.

Organizations without the either take longer to assess, or choose to narrow down the shortlist before making a true assessment of the data quality.  

Posted on July 14, 2023.


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