DB Logo

Done in just a few clicks

Ordering goods wagons with DB Cargo is about to become easier. This autumn will see the launch of link2rail, a platform that will offer customers even more benefits.

Digitalisation at DB Cargo is starting to take shape. At the Lab in Duisburg,a team is currently applying the finishing touches to the link2rail platform before it is rolled out for customers in the autumn. This will open up new possibilities of the kind that DB Cargo presented at the transport logistic trade fair. Most importantly, the new platform will make regular processes much easier: “Even for repeat orders, customers previously had to re-enter muchof the necessary information,” says Jürgen Bosse, Head of Digital Sales at link2rail. In future, link2rail will let users save templates, allowing them to add the remaining data like preferred delivery dates and send them with just a few clicks. The platform will also make another thing easier for businesses: “Some customers require a separate consignment note for each wagon. Previously, each wagon had to be booked individually for this to work. In future, a checkbox will take care ofit,” explains Bosse.

There will be three different ways to access the link2rail platform: an online portal, apps for mobile devices and API interfaces. The latter allow the data to flow directly into the customer’s business software. The Customer Lab in Duisburg offers support here. This includes special test data sets for setting up the API. But the team can also help with the use and adaptation of the internet portal, and can even provide assistance on site.

Adapted to the customer’s needs

“Our Customer Lab here in Duisburg is not just a programming hub. We also want to use it for workshops,” says Phillip Naujoks, who leads the team in Duisburg. Interested customers will be invited and guided through the adaptation process. “The users will be able to make adjustments themselves and customise the interface. But first we will look together at the various requirements and preferences, before developing the right solution,” he explains.

For example, during booking, it will be possible to display only the goods wagon types from the catalogue that the respective company could actually require. link2rail also incorporates the new sensor and track-&-trace functions.
 “The customer can see on a map where their wagon is. This enables proactive communication in the event of delays. We use sensor and telematics data to define products that help us generate value for our customers,” says Jürgen Bosse. The sensors include temperature and humidity sensors.

The Customer Lab is open to all customers. It aims to appeal not just to IT experts, but also to logistics procurement specialists and end users. “We are already looking forward to the collaboration and feedback, given that we want to develop and expand link2rail, so that we can have a lasting influence on the development of rail freight transport,” says Naujoks.