Under the ISM Code, the shipping company has the responsibility to ensure that: ‘all personnel involved in the Company’s SMS have an adequate understanding of relevant rules, regulations, code and guidelines’ (Section 6.4), and to ‘establish and maintain procedures for identifying any training which may be required in support of the SMS and ensure that such training is provided for personnel concerned’.
This means that if a ship is equipped with ECDIS, the company has the duty to ensure that users of such a system are properly trained before using the ECDIS operationally at sea. The STCW Convention puts the onus firmly on the company to ensure that mariners on their ships are competent to carry out the duties they are expected to perform. This means that the operators must be trained to use the particular ECDIS on the vessel.
It is reasonable to assume that ECDIS Manufactures update their software constantly, such as to conform to the latest S52 Standard. Therefore one could argue that YES it is an ISM requirement to maintain current knowledge of this evolving equipment, and YES it must be considered best practice.