Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines optimizes decisions to safely and profitably get millions of customers to their destinations.

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Customer Profile

Southwest Airlines, the largest domestic carrier in the US

Whether getting the best price on the 1.9 billion gallons of fuel, improving flight team quality of life through intelligent crew scheduling, or even reducing delays due to inclement weather, Southwest counts on FICO Optimization and modeling to make the best decisions every time, faster than ever, so that they can safely and profitably get millions of customers to their destinations.

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Southwest has FICO Optimization solutions across its entire operations

These key optimization areas include:

Crew Scheduling –– FICO® Xpress Optimization enables the planners to easily manage constraints and trade-offs to find an optimal crew schedule each month.

Fuel Tankering –– Using FICO® Xpress Optimization, Southwest runs different burn calculations to determine whether it’s worth it to fuel up and how much it might save. 

Fuel Purchasing –– Southwest’s optimization team plugs all this data into FICO® Xpress Optimization to find the best plan for where to fuel up, when and how.

Southwest Airlines wins 2016 FICO® Decision Management Innovation Award for real-time operations recovery tool.

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The horizon looks exciting for Southwest

Southwest Airlines connects people to what’s important in their lives by carrying more than 100 million passengers a year to 93 domestic and international destinations.

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FICO® Xpress Optimization underlies some of the biggest, most expensive problems that we solve at the airline. Every day, we make thousands of operational decisions to keep the company running and it can be difficult to consider all the options and make the best decisions. Optimization enables us to enumerate and model the problems and see a bigger solution space. FICO’s software enables us to come up with good answers very quickly.

Rusty Burlingame
Senior Operations, Research Developer at Southwest Airlines
Enabling Technologies

Leveraging Optimization

Optimization is the science of better decisions. It helps businesses create the best possible plans, explore alternatives, understand trade-offs, and respond to changes in business operations.


The science of better decisions.
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