Working at Norfolk Southern | Glassdoor

Norfolk Southern Overview

Norfolk, VA
10000+ employees
Company - Public (NSC)
$10+ billion (USD) per year
Norfolk Southern is a Fortune 300 and a 2018 Forbes America's Best Employers Company.
Its main subsidiary, Norfolk Southern Railway, transports freight over an asset network consisting 4,000 locomotives, 69,000 rail cars, and 19,500 track miles in ... Read more

Mission: Our vision is to be the safest, most customer-focused, and successful transportation company in the world.

Company Updates

  • The Norfolk Southern Foundation is donating $100,000 to assist in Hurricane Florence recovery efforts in North Carolina. The Foundation, Norfolk Southern’s charitable giving arm, will direct $50,000 to the American Red Cross and $50,000 to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina for relief efforts.

    “Many of our Norfolk Southern employees, facilities, and customers are located in these affected areas, and Red Cross and food bank recovery efforts are timely and vital,” said James A. Squires, NS chairman, president and CEO. “We want our employees, customers, and community neighbors to know that Norfolk Southern is there to help where it’s needed most.”

    As part of the relief effort, the Norfolk Southern Foundation’s Matching Gift program will match employee gifts of $50 or more to the American Red Cross or to any Feeding America food bank.

    Norfolk Southern employs 1,245 railroaders and operates over 1,187 route miles of track in North Carolina.

  • We are proud to be honored as one of the "Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion."

    2018 Best Places to Work | The Disability Equality Index Web Site

    Companies that receive a score of 80 or above on the DEI are considered "DEI Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion." Use of the "DEI Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion" name is an exclusive benefit for the companies that scored an 80 or above on the DEI.

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Norfolk Southern – Why Work For Us?

NS serves domestic and international customers.

As a leading transportation provider, Norfolk Southern operates 19,500 route miles in 22 states and D.C., supports international trade with service to every major Eastern seaport, 10 river ports, and nine lake ports, and operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East.

NS leads the way.

NS' board of directors and executive management team lead one of the nation’s top transportation companies. NS invests in projects to expand the rail network, increase freight capacity, and improve efficiency for customers. These projects create jobs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, making green shipping a reality.

Vision and values define NS.

NS' vision is to "be the safest, most customer-focused, and successful transportation company in the world." NS is committed to providing an injury-free work environment, delivering customers’ products efficiently and reliably, and being a good corporate citizen.

NS subsidiaries deliver for customers.

Several subsidiaries help extend Thoroughbred service. Whether its assistance with transload services, fiber optics installation, extra cushioning for a shipment, or any special shipping need, NS has solutions.

NS Information Technology

Our IT team is currently innovating a new safety technology, Positive Train Control (PTC), to automatically stop locomotives. In addition, IT supports 400+ applications. IT Associate Developers are responsible for working with applications that integrate with different technologies or existing systems to enhance train operations.

Norfolk Southern offers a competitive benefits package to meet the needs of employees and their families. Depending on your position, benefits may vary. For example, some employee benefits are determined by collective bargaining agreements.

  • Medical, Dental, Vision and Life Insurance
    NS offers comprehensive and affordable medical coverage through a network of physicians, facilities, and other providers. Employees can choose the plan that fits their lifestyle.
  • Vacation and Holidays
    Employees are eligible for paid vacation days based on years of service and type of position. In addition, a typical year includes 11 paid holidays for eligible employees.
  • 401(k) with Company Match, Retirement Benefits
    Our 401(k) plan allows eligible employees to plan for the future and save a portion of their pay for retirement. NS matches employee contributions up to a limit.

    Norfolk Southern railroad employees are eligible to receive additional retirement and other benefits based on railroad earnings.

  • NS Scholarship, Matching Gifts, and Employee Purchase Programs
    Norfolk Southern’s annual scholarship program awards educational scholarships to children of NS employees. National Merit Scholarship Corporation, an independent, nonprofit organization, selects the scholarship recipients. Scholarship descriptions are available on the NMSC website: When employees and retirees contribute to eligible nonprofit organizations through NS’ Matching Gifts Program, the NS Foundation will match the tax-deductible portion of their donations, dollar for dollar. NS employees have the opportunity to purchase computers, appliances, wireless service, and insurance at a discounted price.

Promoting diversity and inclusion across our network.

To continue to attract and retain a qualified and talented workforce, NS established a Corporate Diversity Council over a decade ago with employees across the company to implement diversity initiatives and serve as ambassadors. However, in a company with operations in 22 states and the District of Columbia, NS decided to localize its diversity and inclusion efforts for greater impact.

NS has established Diversity & Inclusion Councils in each of its operating divisions and the Atlanta and Norfolk offices. Each council includes a diverse mix of employees who represent a variety of departments and locations in the corresponding division. This localized approach enables more employees to take an active role in identifying, developing, and implementing processes and initiatives that will foster diversity and inclusion.

“I am confident that with the input and participation of NS employees, this targeted approach will have a lasting impact on all – personally and professionally.” – James A. Squires, chairman, president and CEO.

Diversity Makes Us Unique

At Norfolk Southern, we celebrate our individuality. Our employees are diverse not only in race, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, and military status, but also education, experiences, skills, and perspectives. By leveraging the unique backgrounds and viewpoints of nearly 27,000 employees, we create a culture of innovation, respect, and inclusion. This strengthens our organization by attracting, retaining, and developing the best talent to improve safety, service, and business results. 

Inclusion Brings Us Together

Norfolk Southern promotes an inclusive work environment where all employees feel welcomed, respected, and engaged. Employees thrive in a workplace where differing viewpoints, ideas, and experiences are freely shared and valued. We encourage all employees to contribute their distinctive skills and capabilities to help us realize our vision of being the safest, most customer-focused, and successful transportation company in the world.

Norfolk Southern Reviews

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Norfolk Southern Chairman, President and CEO James A. Squires
James A. Squires
106 Ratings
  • Featured Review

    "Great place to work"

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Atlanta, GA
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Atlanta, GA
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Norfolk Southern full-time (More than a year)


    Midtown location in ATL is exciting but probably more for younger people coming out of college like myself. Pay and benefits are great. 401k contribution and pension.

    Working in the IT dept here is great with flex start time. WFH available. There are opportunities to move around departments. Work life balance is great, no overtime or weekend craziness, unless needed but happens rarely. Newly renovated office space is nice to be in for 8 hrs everyday.

    Technology is improving. Most teams are java or .net on the backend. Frontend is one of the Javascript frameworks.

    I enjoy coming to work everyday and my team is super!


    Not much cons. I enjoy everyday here but if I have to think of a con, here goes...
    Management is obviously old school in their ways and thinking and a little resistant to new ideas, but that's true of humans anywhere who have done the same thing for a long time.

    The place is very bureaucratic with decision making and such.

    Different teams have different experiences, for example, another developer from another team quit after 4 months because he couldn't stand the place and said his team members were not supportive, meanwhile my team could not have been any more suppportive, so..i guess it is what you make of it.

    Advice to Management

    Not much complaint here but seems like the guys in the field may feel otherwise.

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Norfolk Southern Photos

Norfolk Southern photo of: Steel wheels on steel rail is efficiency in motion.
Norfolk Southern photo of: A team member is welding at our Roadway Equipment Shop
Norfolk Southern photo of: A freight car repairer replaces worn nuts and bolts from a freight car.
Norfolk Southern photo of: Heritage Locomotives
Norfolk Southern photo of: Training Coordinators in the field
Norfolk Southern photo of: An engineer in a locomotive at Rose Yard.
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Norfolk Southern Interviews



Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview




  1. Featured Interview

    Helpful (25)  

    Transportation Interview

    Anonymous Employee
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview


    I applied through college or university. The process took 3+ months. I interviewed at Norfolk Southern.


    The interview process was very formal. I applied through a University recruiting process, received an on campus interview, and then attended final round of interviews in Atlanta Headquarters. The pre-assessment was challenging and had both math and high vocabulary elements. Everyone throughout the process was very helpful and friendly.

    Interview Questions

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Norfolk Southern Awards & Accolades

  • Top 100 Military Friendly employers, G.I. Jobs / Victory Media, 2018
  • Forbes 2018 Best Employers for Women, Forbes, 2018
  • America's Best Employers, Forbes, 2018
  • Best Companies for Multicultural Women, Women's Choice Award, 2018
  • Global 2000: The World's Best Employers #27,, 2018
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Pledges & Certifications

Diversity Commitment

Has programs that support a diverse and inclusive workforce

Pledge to Thrive

Taking steps to prioritize employee well-being

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