Keeping Propellers Turning Amidst Operational Challenges
It has been two years since the world experienced a global pandemic. Since then, it has been choppy seas. The new normal is characterised by sudden changes to guidelines on people movement, including restrictions targeting specific nationalities from signing off and on. Limited flights, soaring costs and multiple Covid testing requirements add to the complexities on the ground and impede our efforts to bring seafarers home, or on board.
We thank port authorities and health facilities around the world who have set aside resources to vaccinate crew. Without crew, our ships cannot sail; and if our ships cannot sail, we cannot deliver cleaner energy to the world. Our crewing team works hard to maintain open and transparent communications, and has, in collaboration with other affiliates of BW Group, implemented countermeasures to tackle continued challenges from the pandemic.
Communication and Vaccination
With technology, help is only a message or call away. We relaunched BW@Work, an internal sea-shore engagement platform to improve communications, especially on topics related to wellness, health and safety, IT security, and other ESG-related topics. We continue to focus on the BW Wellness program, an initiative which emphasises the importance of physical and mental wellness on board. We also report crew movements daily amongst operational teams and issue weekly Covid-19 information updates as part of our crew change management. In-country practices and restrictions can change quickly and we strive to align office health and safety procedures to comply with these changes.
We consider vaccination essential in managing Covid-19 and an important way to keep our seafarers safe during employment. Our crew have access to on shore contacts to coordinate their vaccination and enquire about vaccines. We coordinate with port agents and crewing offices for crew to receive their vaccination while on shore leave or on board. As at January 2022, over 90 percent of our crew onboard are fully vaccinated.
Keeping Spirits Up
Initiatives are regularly organised as part of overall internal engagement on shore and at sea. Events in the calendar include a Zero Harm art competition for children and siblings of employees, a photography contest to capture the uniqueness of a career at sea, and other initiatives held under the auspices of the BW Wellness Program.
Life@Sea Photo Contest
Each year, a photography contest allows our seafarers to showcase their creativity. 2021’s theme “Life@Sea” attracted over 300 submissions, and the winning entry graces the cover of our vessel tri-fold calendars – a corporate gift for all vessels to keep track of days at sea and serve as polite reminders of our Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption Policy.
In June 2021, we relaunched an internal engagement platform that connects seafarers and colleagues. Hosted on a Facebook@Work platform, BW@Work facilitates communication on a familiar and casual setting.