Faced with the challenge of engaging a workforce that was largely in the field during the workday without phones or computers, we created an SMS-based game that challenged everyone at Norfolk Southern to help adopt sustainable practices in their professional and personal lives.

At the beginning of each month, the Connections chatbot posed a challenge to the employees - for example, "Could you carpool with at least one other person 10 days this month?" Halfway through the month, the chatbot would check in with each employee on their progress. At the end of the month, the employee would self-report how well they did.


Employees who participated in the program were eligible for prizes. The chatbot helped to administer prize distribution, successfully collected t-shirt sizes and other information in order to facilitate this process.

Our application used a Node.js-based app hosted on AWS that connected to the Twillio API to send text messages. All data was stored in MongoDB so that the chatbot could conduct context-driven conversations with each employee.