Passengers are rediscovering the train following the upheaval of the pandemic. So now is the time to streamline operations and implement cost efficiency in passenger and cargo transport.

Indeed, many rail companies are meeting this challenge by focusing on digitization. Typical examples include:

  • Improving employee and customer experience through mobile applications.
  • Enabling end-to-end tracking of cargo through smart data capture software.
  • Facilitating the inspection of trains and routes using technologies like augmented reality.
  • Using AI to schedule employee activities and tasks.

These projects can be complex and lengthy. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Rail companies can access easy-to-implement solutions and generate immediate benefits for customers, employees, and the company.

Here, we will demonstrate why Scandit Smart Data Capture is easy-to-implement solution and how it can reshape rail travel.

access the guide icon

Ready to read more?Register to access the guide

All-round support in passenger service

A passenger’s experience can often hinge on simple contact points. These include being able to easily obtain the right information or navigate the processes like ticket purchase and inspection.

The smart devices carried by train attendants, customer service, and onboard service staff can be enabled for a number of these tasks.

One device – many tasks

  • Scan digital and analog tickets. Even in poor lighting conditions, reflections, smartphone displays that are set too dark, and crumpled or otherwise damaged tickets. Read more about the high accuracy of Scandit Smart Data Capture.
  • Issue digital tickets or vouchers. This includes reservations for connecting trains or tickets for bicycle transport. Passengers then download the ticket to their own devices via QR code scanning.
  • Retrieve information on connecting trains and alternative connections, which are also transferred to passengers’ devices via QR code.
  • Register snacks and drinks in the on-board restaurant and mobile on-board service.
  • ID checking. This is useful for cross-border trips, or to record the ID details of fare evaders. Here Scandit’s ID scanning comes in, it can securely extract data from 2000+ identity documents worldwide.

There are other supplementary benefits. For example, a smart device’s ability to relay real-time information can provide opportunities for additional revenue streams.

Scandit’s Barcode Scanner SDK has made it easier for the crew to scan tickets. The switch to smart devices has resulted in a faster and more accurate service. And we’ve had really positive feedback from the crew who previously couldn’t scan tickets with the former equipment.

Karin Harrius, IT administrator for Portable Equipment – BKU

Modern passenger smartphone services

There are many opportunities to make existing apps more versatile and user-friendly for passengers.

Check tickets purchased on a smartphone

Scandit’s augmented reality feature can be used on the customer app to highlight coupons or provide travel information. In either case, the customer just needs to scan the barcode with the device camera, and the relevant information is displayed on-screen.

While single scanning can be used with QR codes to participate in surveys, participate in loyalty and bonus programs, or let you download train schedules.

Smart data capture adds momentum to cargo and logistics

Cargo by rail is becoming increasingly important in alleviating pressure on the road network. The basis for reliable and cost-effective freight and logistics services is digital end-to-end processes.

employee scanning paper with smartphone

Railroad companies can simplify these processes by eliminating the need for employees to scan each item individually. Scandit’s MatrixScan can scan multiple packages, pallets, or other freight items at once saving time, enabling seamless tracking, and reducing errors.

SBB implements modern Track & Trace with Scandit

Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) has replaced dedicated barcode scanners of their internal postal service provider with smart devices using Scandit. The new scanners perform over 180,000 operations per month.

In addition to internal transport, the Scandit-powered app supports the transport of SBB customers’ luggage, including the door-to-door luggage transport service.

Scandit has streamlined our tracking processes by seamlessly integrating with our existing IT systems. This ensures that all deliveries across our entire network can be reliably managed and tracked using a single device – and releases us from having to rely on dedicated barcode scanners.

Conradin Lietha, Project Manager, SBB

More efficient processes in depots and workshops

Railroad companies can use Scandit-powered smart devices to automate, simplify and accelerate their processes in a wide range of areas.

These include reducing costs, shortening processing times, improving fix rates, and taking care of employees’ tedious tasks.

Tracking servicing tools – an example

Tools and technical equipment can be tracked in detail when and where are used in depots and workshops. An engineer’s smart devices, equipped with a Scandit-based app, can be used to scan any barcodes on the tool.

As a result, companies can determine the duration of use and utilization in order to plan lifecycles, repairs, or new acquisitions.

The removal of parts or supplies such as protective equipment from warehouses can be similarly documented. The information can also be used to trigger re-orders.

The same technology helps in the maintenance of equipment and systems. For example in proving that maintenance cycles have been adhered to or in recording service cases. Technicians can also use barcode scanning to display inspection intervals, identify and order replacement parts, or confirm completed maintenance.

Smartphones are a match for dedicated barcode scanners

Companies often still rely on dedicated barcode scanners only because they have been familiar with the technology for years.

Many businesses have been relying on dedicated barcode scanners but there is a limit to what they can do. Smart device technology has now evolved to the point that, with the right software, they can become excellent data capture devices.

The advantages of Scandit-powered smart devices include:

  • A touchscreen for features like augmented reality.
  • Haptic feedback for scanning notifications.
  • The ability to scan multiple barcodes at once.
  • Scandit SparkScan comes with a ready-made user interface that can be inserted over the top of your application with just a few lines of code.
  • Scandit Express adds barcode scanning functionality to the keyboard. It can then be used to scan and log items.

Perhaps as importantly, they provide the ability to run multiple apps on the same device. This means they can be more future-proof compared to a dedicated scanning device.

So, if you are looking at the digitization of your rail business then Scandit can help make it easier for you. What to know how? Contact us for more information.

Learn more about empowering your employees

Pilsner Urquell Switches Delivery Recording with Smart Data Capture

How Pilsner Urquell equipped its drivers with Scandit software-enabled Samsung smart devices to deliver fresh lager to its customers as efficiently as possible.

Accelerate Your Distribution Operations Today

Unlock new levels of efficiency and productivity with smart devices and Scandit Smart Data Capture.

MatrixScan Count - Reshaping Logistics Workflows

Give your employees a way to faster and more accurate unloading, receiving and inventory management.