Railinc Tracks Blog

Railinc tracks are everywhere although you don't always see them. The Railinc Tracks blog reveals them one at a time and shows you how we help to keep railroads, railcars and rail shipments moving across America. The blog is staffed by the Railinc Corporate Communication team and will give you news and insights about our company, our people and our products.

Entries with tag railsight .

Railinc's Parker Named Supply Chain Pro to Know

Railinc Vice President of Operations Yates Parker has been recognized as a 2018 supply chain executive “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Chain Executive magazine. The award honors individuals from software firms and service providers, consultancies and academia who have helped their supply chain clients or the supply chain community at large prepare to meet the significant challenges of today’s business climate.

Parker was selected for the award from over 300 entrants and was recognized in the March 2018 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive magazine.

Click here to see all the winners.

“We commend this year’s recipients for their achievements in supply chain and for paving the way for the next generation of exceptional supply chain leaders,” said John Yuva, editor of Supply & Demand Chain Executive. ”This year’s recipients embody the commitment to transformative supply chain tools and processes, earning these individuals a rightful place in this year’s Pros to Know listing.”

Parker manages Railinc’s commercial business unit, which includes tracing, reporting, messaging, and research and development product families, as well as oversees the company’s customer experience operations. He and his teams work with Class I railroads and other freight rail industry partners to identify, develop and refine technology solutions to address some of the industry’s biggest operational challenges.

Parker joined Railinc in 2008 as vice president and chief financial officer and added customer experience to his responsibilities in 2014. He has been in his current role since early 2017.

Parker earned bachelor’s degrees in accounting and business management from North Carolina State University and a master’s degree in business administration from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A certified public accountant, Parker was named CFO of the Year by the Triangle Business Journal in 2010.

About Supply & Demand Chain Executive
Supply & Demand Chain Executive is the executive's user manual for successful supply and demand chain transformation, utilizing hard-hitting analysis, viewpoints and unbiased case studies to steer executives and supply management professionals through the complicated, yet critical, world of supply and demand chain enablement to gain competitive advantage. Learn more at www.sdcexec.com.

Railinc Named a Top Software, Tech Provider

Railinc has been named by Food Logistics as one of the FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers for 2017. The publication provides an annual list that serves as a resource guide of software and technology providers whose products and services are critical for companies in the global food and beverage supply chain.

“New developments and innovations in the software and technology sector are making sizeable impacts on the global food supply chain,” said Lara L. Sowinski, editorial director for Food Logistics and its sister publication, Supply & Demand Chain Executive. “The result is greater visibility, improved regulatory compliance, enhanced shelf life for perishables, and the emergence of a more proactive and nimble food supply chain that benefits both the food industry and its logistics partners, as well as the end consumer.”

Railinc’s RailSight suite of applications gives customers – including those in the global food supply chain – complete rail shipment visibility and equipment management data delivered to their desktop or via a TMS solution. Our data products and technology systems are deeply embedded in the North American freight rail network. We also manage widely-used industry databases, build critical software applications and provide essential business intelligence services supporting the freight rail industry.

“We are excited to be recognized by Food Logistics,” said Chuck Hieronymi, director of business solutions. “Our RailSight solutions provide unmatched, near real-time rail shipment tracking data, cloud-hosted dashboards and mapping tools, and reporting and analytics services to help our customers improve operations, customer service, safety and efficiency. And we are continuing to enhance our technology with API connectivity as we increase the breadth and depth of shipment data available to our customers.”

Railinc appears in the November/December 2017 issue of Food Logistics, as well as online at www.foodlogistics.com, as one of 2017’s FL100+ Top Software and Technology Providers.

About Food Logistics
Food Logistics
is published by AC Business Media, a business-to-business media company that provides targeted content and comprehensive, integrated advertising and promotion opportunities for some of the world’s most recognized B2B brands. Its diverse portfolio serves the construction, logistics, supply chain and other industries with print, digital and custom products, events and social media.

—Railinc Corporate Communications

How Network Visibility Optimizes Rail Shipping

Freight rail network, equipment and shipment visibility makes sure cereal is there in time for breakfast each day.

Eating breakfast cereal seems simple. You pour it in bowl, add milk, grab a spoon and dig in. But when you think about what it took for that cereal to reach your table, breakfast can get complicated.

First, a farmer bought supplies to grow and harvest the grain, which was then shipped for milling. Paper pulp and plastic were needed to produce the box and inner wrapper. Those components went to a cereal-production plant. The finished cereal boxes shipped via multiple modes and vehicles to one or more warehouses before arriving to the store. The manufacturer had to maintain product quality and prevent losses from theft and accidents all along the way.

So it turns out, the most important ingredient in your cereal might just be the transportation network that got it to you.

Railcars are an essential part of this network. Freight rail is integral in the production of breakfast cereal and most every other consumer or industrial product. If a railcar is delayed, there could be an impact on the price, the variety or even the availability of a product. Complete equipment and shipment visibility into the network can help.

Complete Equipment and Shipment Visibility Available with Shipping by Freight Rail

For industrial and consumer goods to move safely, efficiently and reliably, a shipper must have optimum visibility into the location and status of transportation equipment and shipment visibility across its entire network.

That's why accurate, up-to-date railcar tracking is critical. Railcar fleets can include thousands of freight cars, many of which are nearly identical. But each car belongs somewhere, whether in a customer's yard, at an interchange point or in a shop for scheduled maintenance or emergency repair.



The stakes are only getting higher for railcar owners and users because with new opportunities come new customers.

The Association of American Railroads reports that in the last 15 years, North American railroad market share (by ton-miles) has topped 40 percent. Railroads carry more ton-miles today than any other mode, including truck. But as freight rail has become a more important link in many supply chains, expectations are higher for railcar owners.

This environment drives the need for complete equipment and shipment visibility across the North American rail network and has given rise to new tracking and tracing technologies. Shippers, third-party logistics service providers (3PLs), and railcar owners and lessors who make effective use of these technologies have greater opportunities for success.

RailSight Data Support Fleet Planning, Railcar Tracking and Greater Rail Shipment Visibility

Consider Railinc's RailSight suite of applications and how it supports railcar tracking and tracing.

Class I railroads have built data gathering and management networks to provide information that supply chain managers need. These networks collect data from the 1.5 million railcars tagged for identification as they pass one of the thousands of scanners strategically placed across North America. RailSight users can access that data to support real-time decision-making and can review historical data for analysis and optimization.

With more accurate data and complete visibility, railcar owners can better plan their fleet deployments, track cars and meet their customers' expectations.

With more accurate data and complete network visibility, railcar owners can better plan their fleet deployments, track cars and meet their customers' expectations.

A railroad is always the best source of information about a railcar or shipment on its network and this flow of data often occurs between a railroad and its customers. When shipments move among railroads, RailSight processes interline data, providing a seamless integration of all data coming in from the approximately 570 railroads in North America.

Railinc's team, with input from railroads, car owners and lessors, shippers and 3PLs, designed RailSight to deliver comprehensive shipment and equipment management data via a flexible framework that supports its users' changing needs.

RailSight helps railcar owners, shippers and 3PLs locate equipment, improve planning and meet customer expectations through greater network and shipment visibility.


Evolving Freight Rail Environment Demands Dynamic Technology Systems

The RailSight team serves freight rail customers with high quality data and solutions that improve equipment and shipment visibility and support informed decision making and efficient operations.

The freight rail environment is constantly evolving. The good news is that technology resources like RailSight and new approaches to supply chains can help shippers serve customers with high-quality data and solutions that support informed decision-making and efficient operations. Some examples include:

New technology solutions—Technology providers of all sizes and segments, including Oracle, MercuryGate and others are developing solutions for rail. These tools integrate applications and data and are accessible via the cloud.

Greater access to information—Data as a Solution (DaaS) or Software as a Solution (SaaS) services provide deeper visiblity into the supply network and reduce or eliminate costs associated with systems integration. Even companies with small IT footprints can access powerful technology tools that can help optimize operations, and large organizations can leverage systems and data across their enterprise.

Sharpened management focus—Linear supply-chain thinking has evolved into supply-network thinking. These supply networks are composed of relationships among many parties at many levels. The supporting data, apps and infrastructure can shorten the shipment cycle, improve efficiency and reduce errors.

Improved data and visibility—Better data leads to benefits such as more predictable ETAs; reduced dwell time; faster equipment turns; and the potential to reduce costly equipment purchases.

Because supply networks constantly change, businesses should develop processes that continuously optimize their transportation alternatives. Railcar shippers have told us that their biggest operations challenge can be accessing vital information on their large and geographically dispersed fleets. Companies that leverage high quality, complete data can realize greater productivity.

A flexible, evolving technical infrastructure also enables improved utilization of people, processes and technologies across more complex organizations and supply networks.

4 Things You Can Do Now to Improve Network, Equipment and Shipment Visibility

Are you wondering where to start? Here are four things you can do today:

  1. Revisit and validate your data sources to ensure you are receiving the most timely and complete data.

  2. Optimize your supply network across modes, and include rail in your mix. If you don't consider rail, you might leave money on the table.

  3. Incorporate cloud-based solutions that enable you to use the most up-to-date data and applications in support of big data and predictive analytics initiatives.

  4. Take the long view, with a strategy for continuous improvement of your infrastructure, from data to applications. To remain competitive every company needs an evolving plan that leverages a range of tools, from SaaS solutions to ERP systems.

As freight rail has grown in volume, market share and importance, the industry has kept pace with cloud-based information management technology offerings and applications. And that breakfast cereal? It's the high quality data and complete equipment and shipment visibility these solutions provide that help get it to your table.

—Chuck Hieronymi

Railinc's Chuck Hieronymi, who connects customers with RailSight tracking and tracing solutions to help them get the most out of their supply networks.             As Railinc's director of business solutions, Chuck Hieronymi connects customers with RailSight tracking and tracing solutions to help them get the most out of their supply networks. Chuck has held leadership roles with financial, consulting and media companies, and he earned an MBA from the University of Virginia.


Railinc Named Great Supply Chain Partner

Railinc Corp. has been honored again as one of the “100 Great Supply Chain Partners" for 2017 by SupplyChainBrain magazine. Each year, the magazine features an elite group of companies whose customers have nominated them for providing outstanding solutions and services that made a significant impact on their supply chain performance. This is the second consecutive year Railinc has been selected for this logistics industry award.

“Everyone at Railinc is honored by our customers’ recognition of the value we are delivering through products like RailSight,” said Allen West, CEO and president. “Freight rail is a critical component in the supply chain network, and we’re proud of the role we play in our customers’ success.”

Now in its 15th year, SupplyChainBrain solicits nominations from logistics industry companies to evaluate service providers that made a significant impact on their company’s efficiency, customer service and overall supply chain performance.

“This year’s field of nominees was abundant and very strong, hailing from all aspects of supply chain management,” said Brad Berger, publisher of the magazine. “Railinc should be proud to be named amongst the 100 Great!”

RailSight Delivers Rail Shipment Visibility and Rail Equipment Management Data

Railinc’s RailSight suite of applications delivers rail shipment visibility and equipment management data directly to the desktop or via TMS solution to support rail equipment owners, shippers and third-party logistics providers. Railinc’s data products and technology systems are deeply embedded in the North American freight rail network, providing safety and operational support. Railinc also manages widely-used industry databases, builds critical software applications and provides essential business intelligence services supporting the freight rail industry.

SupplyChainBrain, the world’s most comprehensive supply chain management information resource, is accessed year round through a wide range of ever evolving multi-media formats by hundreds of thousands of senior level industry executives. In addition to addressing the fundamental principles of supply-chain management, SupplyChainBrain identifies emerging trends, technologies and best practices, forward thinking ideas and cutting-edge solutions, and continues to write and report about these as they evolve and mature.

Railinc Corp. appeared in the 2017 July/August issue of SupplyChainBrain magazine as a member of this year’s 100 Great Supply Chain Partners.

—Railinc Corporate Communications

Big Data Means Better Rail Shipment Visibility

Each time a wayside detector logs a passing railcar, Railinc receives information about the car. The rail industry uses these event messages to track railcar movements.

As the hub for rail industry data, Railinc receives more than 11 million of these messages every day from all seven Class I railroads and more than 500 short line railroads. That’s more than 4 billion annually, each carrying vital information that supports rail operations. The sheer volume enables Railinc to offer the most comprehensive data feed available to the industry.

Railinc uses these data to create car location messages (CLMs). And despite the name, CLMs aren’t just about location.

They can contain information about waybills, embargoes, bad orders, interchanges, arrivals, departures, estimated time of arrival, loaded and unloaded status, and the start or end of a railcar’s trip, among other data points.

These CLMs feed Railinc’s RailSight Track and Trace solution. The industry’s only comprehensive, single-source shipment-tracking service, RailSight Track and Trace sends out real-time rail data around the clock, enabling the most complete view available of a rail shipment’s lifecycle. RailSight helps users track railcars and intermodal equipment on more than 530 carriers across North America. Railinc supports various integration and connectivity options, including EDI, API and others.

Shippers, railroads, car owners and third-party logistics providers can use RailSight Track and Trace to access actionable information about equipment and shipments, enable process improvements, and reduce and avoid costs related to railcar storage, bad orders, IT support and infrastructure, billing disputes and other areas. Here are just a few ways RailSight can support logistics needs:

  • Shippers can tell whether a railcar is ready to be loaded or unloaded and have resources at the ready to minimize or avoid demurrage.

  • Railroads can gain complete visibility through a single source into a railcar’s status, even on foreign lines, so they can keep their customers informed about a shipment all the way through to delivery.

  • Car owners can monitor the health and usage of their leased equipment, keeping track of information like trip length and mileage, and who has possession of the railcar.

  • Third-party logistics providers can eliminate information gaps to deliver improved productivity and customer service.

From custom reporting to systems integration, RailSight Track and Trace can deliver the data you need, when you need it, providing information that improves visibility and helps you manage your business more efficiently and effectively.

Ready to learn more about RailSight Track and Trace? Visit the RailSight Track and Trace resource page or contact the Railinc customer support team at 877-724-5462 or csc@railinc.com.

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