DOT's Freight Logistics Optimization Works Gets New Data Exchange

DOT's Freight Logistics Optimization Works Gets New Data Exchange

May 18, 2023
DOT and FLOW members will exchange supply and demand information which will be aggregated, anonymized and returned for a holistic view of freight movement.

At the Freight Logistics Optimization Works (FLOW) spring meeting, which took place earlier this month, it was announced that the FLOW team has developed a data exchange to pool information on goods movement, including incoming container volumes and available logistics equipment.

FLOW, which was launched in March 2022, by the administration and supply chain companies to develop new shared data infrastructure to give companies information to proactively address supply chain challenges via a forward-looking, integrated view of container volumes and equipment in the US. 

 "We are proud to launch FLOW, the first-ever nationwide multimodal freight data exchange, to increase the speed and reduce the costs of shipping goods, in a partnership between the Biden-Harris administration and dozens of supply chain companies," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, in a statement "This has never existed before, but now that it is here we will see benefits nationwide as goods move more quickly and efficiently through our supply chains." 

Through FLOW, USDOT is serving as an independent data steward for participants to exchange supply and demand information to be aggregated, anonymized, and returned for a holistic view of freight movement. Depending on the participant, data exchange may involve total incoming container demand or available supply-side assets, as measured by the availability of different assets to move goods including terminal slots, tractors, chassis, and warehouse space.

Current FLOW participants have access to this shared aggregate view, which will continue to be developed further with participants in the coming months. Currently, FLOW has 53 member companies, having started with 18 members.

To learn more about FLOW, including how to join, please visit bts.gov/flow.

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