Hi Harriet, let’s start with your background before Signol.
I was a seafarer. I sailed as a deck officer for 9 years taking some of the world's largest vessels across the oceans. I moved ashore and went into software development after seeing first-hand how much of the software on the bridge of a ship lacked the very specific user perspective needed. I wanted to sit next to the developers and be the link to these very unique end users!
So, how did you get involved in Signol?
The human aspect of being part of a crew onboard an ocean-going vessel has always fascinated me. It plays such a key role in the workings of a vessel, but only appears to be understood properly by a handful of the uniquely experienced crew - this was what defined a great Captain for me. I was introduced to Signol by a friend and was immediately drawn to the combination of technology and the recognition of the human aspect in its implementation.
How has your role at Signol evolved over the past 2 years?
I started as a consultant for Signol, running a feasibility study into the implementation of nudging in the Maritime sector. The combination of a fantastic group of people, a meaningful environmental impact and a huge potential to transform the connectivity and respect for seafarers persuaded me to leave my consulting days and join the team. My role has evolved from proving Signol nudging can be done through research and investigation to now showing the fantastic results we have seen on implementing the Signol system at sea, and sharing this success with the wider shipping community.
Why did you move from being at sea to working on land? What was the transition like?
I saw a gulf in understanding between those ashore and the crew onboard vessels. This appeared to be true for the many parties involved in shipping goods around the world and far too often resulted in the crew, and their welfare, being forgotten. I saw a unique role to fill ashore and have enjoyed taking on the challenge. I was also desperate to have a dog!
The transition ashore had its challenges along with the benefits. Suddenly I could attend all those weddings, birthdays and special occasions I had become accustomed to missing while away. But I can no longer just throw on a boiler suit when heading to work!
What do you think are the biggest tech challenges for the maritime industry?
Connectivity, communication and understanding.
What is your favourite part about working with seafarers?
Their unique ability to adapt, understand and take control of a situation. They are used to solving problems independently, overcoming huge social, physical and environmental hurdles on a daily basis. This often results in a sharp, straight talking attitude which I love to work with.
What are you most excited about in Signol’s work in the maritime space?
Showing the power of the crew onboard vessels and highlighting their important role in not only keeping the world fed and equipped, but also reducing emissions.
Where would you like to see Signol’s product in two years time?
I would like to see Signol positively recognising and encouraging seafarers on every vessel afloat. I also see a role for Signol in promoting safety at sea and would like to explore the possibilities here over the next two years.
Finally, here's a little trivia with Harriet:
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Signol is a software platform that draws on insights from behavioral economics to encourage employees to make more efficient decisions. Signol provides personalized feedback through multiple communication channels, as well as data analysis for managers. In aviation, Signol aims to use behavioral "nudges" and incentives to reduce pollution and fuel waste and cut operating costs.