Rail Forum Midlands (RFM) is thrilled with the progress made and work done on their third SME Challenge.
The SME Challenge forms part of the Rail Supply Group’s Rail Sector Deal Midlands Pilots.
The Challenges have been designed to offer SME’s the chance to work with the rail industry to come up with solutions to commercial needs facing the industry.
The main focus of the challenge was Depot Digitalisation and Sustainability with DB Cargo UK serving as the end client.
Over 40 ideas were pitched by SME’s and RFM have selected 14 of these proposals for one-to-one follow up meetings with DB Cargo UK.
DB Cargo UK recognised the importance of the challenging in helping them modernise their operations.
Marie Hill, Chief Transportation and Digitalisation Officer at DB Cargo UK said: “We have had the ability to allow multiple SME’s the opportunity to look at the ‘current’ ways of working at our Stoke and Toton depots.
“[This gives SME’s] an insight into what we do and, what changes they would implement to help DB Cargo UK on its journey to a digital and sustainable future.”
Robert Hodgson, Engagement Manager at RFM spoke on the success of the SME Challenge.
Mr Hodgson said: “It was a pleasure to run this third SME Collaborative Challenge with DB Cargo as the end client, with their goal of improving efficiency, productivity and sustainability of their depots across the country.
“The engagement from both DB Cargo and the many SMEs was excellent and I look forward to seeing some of the ideas and proposals coming to fruition.”
Previous SME Challenges focused on various other challenges currently facing the rail industry.
Challenges around decarbonising freight and the need to remove weight from passenger rail vehicles have take place prior to the third SME Challenge.