Blume Global, a leading provider of supply chain execution and visibility technology solutions, today announced a complimentary, cloud-native platform that allows companies that leverage railroad intermodal services to better coordinate cross-country rail freight deliveries. In partnership with Union Pacific Railroad, Norfolk Southern and CSX, Blume’s end-to-end rail freight scheduler gives users visibility around moving cargo from one railway to another.

At least two railways are typically required to make a delivery across the United States, so planning for long-haul moves can be a challenge. Blume provides current real-time schedules for all major North American railroads, which allows shippers and intermodal marketing companies to easily synchronize shipments across different railroads.

“Coordination among railroads is essential. Utilizing a neutral platform that encourages further collaboration among the rails, IMCs and other users will influence the future of all cargo deliveries,” said Seana Fairchild, assistant vice president of premium marketing at Union Pacific. “At Union Pacific, we are eager to deploy this intelligence as a means to meet increasingly higher demands from our customers.”

In concert with the schedule solution, Blume’s asset management feature tracks details around the movement of intermodal rail shipments and how they interchange. Additionally, Blume validates the real-world movement of freight delivery schedules with the ability to catch missing interchange points and improve accuracy with future deliveries.

“Consistency and accuracy of service are critical to our customers, and this platform helps by improving the visibility of their cross-country rail freight shipments,” said Jeffrey Heller, vice president of intermodal and automotive at Norfolk Southern. “Norfolk Southern and Blume are both committed to leveraging technology to improve customer service, and today’s announcement is another step forward in that regard.”

According to Maryclare Kenney, vice president of intermodal and automotive at CSX, “Blume’s ability to monitor container availability and interline rail schedules enables our customers to run more efficient operations. This solution is a helpful planning tool for IMCs looking to send shipments from one coast to the other.”

With the initial participation of Union Pacific, NS and CSX, Blume has mapped the EMP and UMAX container pools used by IMCs. Blume looks to add more railroad schedules that will fuel its digital twin of the supply chain world, Blume Maps. 

Blume Maps allows customers to plan, track and adjust freight shipments, no matter the mode. Customers use Blume Maps to first plot routes using variable lead times, cost implications and intelligent historical data. Next, they monitor shipments with end-to-end visibility and continuously updated ETAs to ensure orders are traveling on time, receiving notifications when orders may be late or early. When shipments are late, customers can use Blume Maps to view recommended alternate modes, carriers, service levels and routes to bring shipments back on track.

“Blume Global boasts exclusive access to decades of market insights in international and domestic multi-modal logistics, and our rich history with North American railroads puts us in the unique position to offer an innovative solution to a decades-old issue,” said Pervinder Johar, CEO of Blume Global. “This free solution enables better cooperation among railroads and their IMC customers, making sure freight is flowing on the rails as efficiently and effectively as possible.”