11 months ago

2021 September October Marina World

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The magazine for the marina industry


MANAGEMENT SOFTWARE/INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS MARINAGO Office is user-friendly and intuitive. service. Other features such as pointof-sale, fuel management, online reservations and other components would be placed on their own web service. The advantage of this “infrastructure intelligence” allows focused infrastructure changes on the fly without affecting other features and functionality. If there is a surge in online reservation activity, the performance and functionality of different modules will not be affected. Additional resources, such as memory or processing power, can easily be enhanced on the affected service. Another infrastructure intelligence example of a cloud-based system is redundancy. A cloud-based system is a centrally located solution that everyone uses within their own account. Being centrally located, downtime would then affect every user. So, it would not be a good thing if the system went down or became unavailable. This is where a redundancy plan comes into play. As mentioned, the MARINAGO Office cloud-based solution is built on multiple web services and servers in one geographical location. The redundancy plan in place means that if the data centre in that geographical location becomes unavailable, the system automatically switches to another data centre located in a different geographical region and automatically resumes operations. This allows users to continue their marina operations with no interruption at all. Other advantages of cloud-based solutions may be a bit more obvious. Since a cloud-based solution is centrally located, upgrades and enhancements are much easier to deploy. Once a new version is deployed, every user and account instantly has access to that latest version which significantly simplifies account management. Feature intelligence The technological curve of cloud-based solutions has progressed dramatically over the years, providing the ability to create advanced solutions not seen in the past. As organisations utilise and release this technology, solutions become much more intelligent and easier to use. Scribble Software team members have always taken pleasure in being forward-thinking visionaries constantly developing innovative solutions for the marina industry. With an R&D department that never sleeps, we are always looking for a better way to help our customers. The results of such efforts are quite evident in our most advanced marina management solution MARINAGO Office, which we have titled the “Next-Generation Cloud- Based Marina Management Solution.” Technological intelligence within this solution exists on many levels, beginning with reservation management. We built an AI (artificially intelligent) engine that assists dockmasters and marina operators with reservations and rental space placement. During the availability check process, the builtin AI will suggest to the operator the most appropriate space based on the entered criteria. The user may then either accept the proposed assignment or optionally assign other spaces that meet that criterion. While this may sound a bit simplistic, the AI engine is much more intelligent than it appears. Traditional reservation systems perform reservation availability checks to determine if a single space is available to accommodate the entire period of a guest’s stay. If a single space is not available for the entire length of stay, availability is generally declined. However, the AI within MARINAGO Office will also determine what we call a “multi-sequence” availability check. So, if a single space is not available for the entire period, it will look for multiple spaces so that the guest does not have to be turned away. While a multi-sequence reservation may require vessel movement during the stay, it does keep the revenue stream flowing for the marina. Other feature intelligence options are especially taking shape because of the COVID pandemic. Marina management solutions have typically been a business management tool used and operated by marina staff. While this is still primarily the case, the age of social distancing has presented the opportunity to extend management operations directly to the consumer. This is achieved with the introduction of a customer portal. A mobile phone-friendly customer portal provides a cloud-based extension of the management solution directly to the customer, allowing them to sign in and perform various operations ranging from profile management, vessel management, reservations and full accounting features. This makes it much easier for customers to update any payment or credit card information, update contact information changes, update any bought and sold boats, view, print and pay any invoice, as well as view all accounting transactions. A customer portal eases the workload of marina operators by sharing some of the tasks with customers. As marina management solutions continue to evolve, it is pretty evident that the level of intelligence continues to grow. The available technology continues to expand, thus providing the opportunity for a very bright and exciting future. – September/October 2021 33

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