Central Intelligence: A Unified Network Operations Center

Submitted by cmiller on Wed, 02/06/2019 - 13:19
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Central Intelligence
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At Norfolk Southern, we’re reimagining one of the most technologically advanced aspects of our operation: the dispatching of thousands of trains across our 22-state network.

After exploring many different approaches to dispatching, and benchmarking with thought leaders inside and outside our industry, NS embarked on an ambitious project to consolidate all of its dispatching functions – previously located in the field and separated by operating division – into one high-tech nerve center.

Using insight gained from collaboration with other logistics leaders, as well as our own team’s extensive dispatching experience, NS designed and constructed a state-of-the art Network Operations Center, or NOC, in our Atlanta operations headquarters, creating better visibility and alignment for our dispatchers and allowing them to more effectively operate as a single, unified team.

With these enhancements, Norfolk Southern is further optimizing our dispatching processes, improving the efficiency of our operations and providing an even better service product to customers. Put simply, the NOC allows NS to operate our entire system as one, integrated network, with a focus on improving key performance metrics and providing industry-leading service.

Unifying the dispatching function, however, was only the first step. As part of the NOC project, Norfolk Southern also pulled in many related service and support functions, enabling them to seamlessly integrate and support the NOC’s core functions. Now, anyone who helps keep the trains moving, as well as many of the employees who monitor the safety of train operations, are in the same space working as one team.

Through collaboration, teamwork, and innovative thinking, Norfolk Southern has designed a world-class command center that truly is the heartbeat of our railroad. With this reimagined facility, we are even better equipped to trail blaze new technological frontiers and unlock the promise – and possibility – of tomorrow.


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