Conference paper Open Access

Terminal Planning: The Selection of Relevant KPIs to Evaluate Operations

Ville Hinkka; Janne Porkka; Zarrin Fatima; Juha Hyvärinen; Aapo Huovila; Pau Morales-Fusco; Enrique Martin; Gisela Soley

The European Union is highly dependent on seaports for trade with the rest of the world and within its Internal
Market. Approximately, 75% of goods imported and exported and 37% of exchanges within the Union transited
through seaports in 2013. To manage this amount of cargo in ports, smooth operations are required. The
performance of ports is currently evaluated by using different types of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). How
the indicators are described is dependent on the stakeholders and their organizational interest.
Ports, and the transport sector as a whole, are undergoing drastic changes. To cite a few, demand increases, ship
capacity enlargements, shipping line mergers and alliances lead to more concentrated flows and increase of traffic
in certain hub ports detrimental to medium size ones, other aspects such new requirements regarding environment
protection and security are also relevant. At the same time, ports are usually located in the middle of existing
neighborhoods, which limits possibilities to enlarge their area whilst stress is placed to improve the port-city
interrelation. Therefore, there is a need to invest in port infrastructure, but expansion or renovation of a port is
extremely difficult. The required investments are big and the planning horizon is long. Hence, if the designed
structures turn out to be unsuitable due to changes in needs, it is rather expensive to make changes.
Planning tools have developed remarkably during the past 10 years. Different types of planning tools are used in
seaport and terminal design to model the completeness. Modelling generates digital representations of physical
and functional characteristics of a terminal area, buildings and other infrastructures. With the help of model-based
approaches and with suitable KPIs, it is easier to understand and evaluate the effects of certain design solutions
for terminal operations in a larger context. By using modelling tools, it is also possible to compare different design
options to outline how certain choices in terminal design influences on the completeness.
There is a need to define the objectives of good terminal prior to plan the terminal and its operations. A good
terminal would satisfy the stakeholders’ expectations in best possible ways in the given preconditions. The
achievement of objectives can be evaluated by using suitable indicators. However, the indicators used to plan and
model terminal operations may differ from indicators used to evaluate the performance of current ports and
terminals. The purpose of this paper is to analyze the indicators required for terminal planning and compare them
with existing KPIs used for measuring the performance of ports and terminals.

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