Railway Analysts Talk Data-Driven Freight Transport Transformation

TIBCO Norfolk Southern
Reading Time: 2 minutes

North American freight transport provider, Norfolk Southern, is now leading its industry in data analytics. The Class 1 freight rail service provider, which covers nearly 20,000 route miles from Florida to Canada, uses its data to improve speed and consistency, keep customers informed, and even make necessary pivots/adjustments to accommodate COVID-19-related challenges.

A certain degree of transparency is expected in this digital age, particularly in the shipping and transportation industry. Customers today want to track the progress of their shipment from point of origination through delivery, in real time—a truly modern concept to apply to an industry like railroads that far predates computers.  

Modern Solutions for an Established Industry

To modernize itself so it could meet twenty-first century digital business challenges, Norfolk Southern took a fresh look at its data analytics, teaming with TIBCO to make it possible. This process helped Norfolk Southern identify its strengths and weaknesses as well as how to better take advantage of its data assets. 

Perhaps the largest benefit to come from digitizing Norfolk Southern was the ability to centralize its operations to one main dispatching center. In 2018, the company built a ‘home base’ for all of its operational functions, called the Network Operations Center. Every operating train is monitored in real time from this location, providing a 360-degree view of transport progress and delivery times. With all of its data and decision-making originating from the same source, improved communications and more efficient transportation services resulted. 

In Conversation with the Railway Analysts

To capture the full story of the rail service provider’s digitization, TIBCO Chief Analytics Officer, Michael O’Connell, sat down for a Q&A with Jonathan Holliday, Director of Business Process and Systems, and Josef Kaufer, Superintendent of Locomotive Analysis, at Norfolk Southern. Check out their conversation to learn how the company invested in a twenty-first-century digital transformation to speed deliveries and improve customer transparency with the help of TIBCO. 

And in case you weren’t in attendance, you can catch Norfolk Southern’s customer session from TIBCO NOW 2020 here.