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IPCSA : Preparing for Post COVID-19 operations

“Considerations and Practicalities for Port Community Systems, Single Window and other electronic exchange platforms”

 “Considerations and Practicalities for Port Community Systems, Single Window and other electronic exchange platforms” Port Community Systems (PCS), Single Window (SW) and other Electronic Exchange platforms that have during the COVID-19 Global Crisis been critical elements of the digital infrastructure for the supply chain, including Sea and Air Ports, Trade Facilitation and Cross Border logistical and administrative / regulatory processes are now considering how to plan and prepare for recovery and normalisation of operations. During the crisis those organisations managing such electronic platforms were able to easily transfer operations from office to home and still able to provide the quality services as trusted third parties. These electronic platforms are emerging from the crisis, stronger and are considered even more critical by a wider range of stakeholders who are dependent on their digitalisation expertise of the supply chain. IPCSA considers some key impacts and lessons learned from COVID-19

. COVID-19 pandemic impacts / lessons

  • Less resistance to change to new methods of working.
  • All the projects and initiatives involving digitalisation are now highest priorities.
  • More support from the government and digitalisation of processes in the supply chain, particularly administrative ones.
  • Existing and new Digital services become a priority.
  • Remote work of employees can be more productive.
  • Remote operations of business systems (PCS, SW, …) is critical for business continuity.
  • Video conference and online meetings are useful tools as a substitute to face to face meetings.

 Emerging from COVID-19 Restrictions IPCSA, as the global representative body for the operators of Port Community System, Single Window Operators, Airport Community System and Cargo Community Systems, has with the support of it’s membership created some key points that should be considered in the post COVID-19 world by Sea and Air Port Community Systems operators, Single Window operators, Port and Airport Authorities and other Electronic Exchange Platform operators. These points should be considered in relation to both your organisation, your people and your operations:

 Rationalise – Identify key aspects and people required to ensure operations and normalise activities.

 Review – Record/note the changes that occurred from the start of restrictions and lockdowns to current social distancing guidance, the effect this had on operations and changes to operations and processes. Ensure the review of the changes and decisions on a continuous basis to be able to adapt to further changes in requirements.

Reconsider – Reconsider lessons learned from the lockdown situation to be included in your governance and working environment, including employee home working as an option.

 Plan – Future impacts and review your internal meeting procedure and back-up solutions, bearing the practice from COVID-19 in mind. www.ipcsa.international People – understand the requirements of your people (including health, social and transport considerations) and how these can be incorporated into the new normal after COVID-19.

Ensure that for key people back-up staff are available, ensure management is aware of key operational and safety procedures.

 Processes – Ensure your authentication and security processes, including cyber security meet the requirements of your community, bearing in mind increased external accesses. It is also difficult to “instantly” digitalize a process during a crisis so it is important to plan how to digitalize all the processes that are still paper based.

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