Page 40: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (October 2015)

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The Head of Class

Christopher J. Wiernicki

Chairman, President & CEO, American Bureau of Shipping; Chairman IACS

The global maritime industry faces myriad challenges in the ongoing quest to run safe, pro? table operations in an oftentimes tumultuous environment. More than ever vessel owners are faced with daunting regulatory and technical challenges, and the world’s leading classi? cation societies remain the foundation upon which successful marine operations are built. Last month we visited with Christopher J. Wiernicki, the head of ABS and the newly elected head of the International Association of Classi? cation Societies (IACS), for insight and analysis.

By Greg Trauthwein

I’m sure when you assumed the investments in people, systems and tech- ects. Our stature as the provider of class drillship was delivered with this nota- mantle of leadership at ABS, you had nology. services speaks for itself. tion. No other classi? cation society has goals. Can you share with our readers As with any strategic agenda change In 2014 we added more than 15m gt classed drilling equipment and essential your goals from the outset, the prog- comes with time but we are making tan- to the ABS classed ? eet from 2013. This marine equipment with a software nota- ress that has been made in achieving gible progress in achieving these goals was due to a combination of new vessel tion addressing software quality during them, and how they have changed so far. I see our global workforce aligned deliveries and Transfer of Class Agree- construction.

during your tenure at the top? around our objectives and responsive to ments which alone brought in a net to- We are strategically investing and

I laid out a very straightforward set of the needs of the industry. tal of 5m gt to the ABS ? eet. In total, developing next generation work ? ow goals from my ? rst day in this role: We are aggressive in our pursuit of the ABS ? eet grew by more than seven platforms that will enable our people to 1. Align the organization around the technology leadership. percent year-on-year. In the challenging unleash their creativity and knowledge seven core values that represent the Spir- Class of the Future continues to evolve economy of 2015 we continue to hold and signi? cantly improve ef? ciency and it of ABS and support our mission. These and we know advancing predictive, data- strong and continue to maintain the lead- response time. Bringing new tools to our values are safety, teamwork, innovation, driven analytics is essential to this. We ing new order market share amongst our engineers and surveyors and optimizing integrity, quality, reliability and a focus have invested in R&D initiatives that competitors. A workplace safety mindset the way they work.

on people. will further these goals. Through our ro- is in place as we see positive movement Positioning ourselves for sustainable 2. Establish ABS as the technology bust technology program in Houston and in key indicators including a reduction in success remains a priority. We’ve ex- leader driving Class of the Future. in ? ve additional technology research lost time incidents. We closed 2014 with panded our training and development 3. Be the most ef? cient provider of centers around the globe, we are fund- 2 LTIs and remain focused on hitting our offering. Earlier this year we launched quality and responsive class services. ing some of the most innovative research target of zero this year. “Blue Print for Your Future” a program 4. Embrace a workplace safety lead- in the industry. We are moving forward We continue offering technology to for developing our talent in areas rang- ership mindset focused on employee with ground breaking nanotechnology improve safety through software quality ing from technical expertise to team safety behavior. research in icephobic surfaces for im- management. This year ABS achieved management. We continue to build on 5. Position ABS for the future to proved Arctic safety. This year ABS is an industry ? rst when we rolled out the our strengths to ensure that we retain our compete on value by making strategic advancing more than 150 research proj- important ISQM notation and the ? rst competitive edge.

40 Maritime Reporter & Engineering News • OCTOBER 2015

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First published in 1881 Maritime Reporter is the world's largest audited circulation publication serving the global maritime industry.