RFID for asset tracking and inventory management is nothing new. RFID systems have been around for some time, but RFID used in conjunction with advancing technologies are sparking real change for businesses of all sizes. These unique identifiers provide meaningful insights to mitigate losses and boost productivity.
Automated and systematic asset tracking and inventory management has extensive benefits for business owners. Asset tracking and inventory management are typically understated business facets – once relegated to the realms of manual systems, spreadsheets, and barcodes. Evolved, automated RFID tracking systems use smart technologies to provide insights to business owners for strategic decision-making, improved processes, and increased profits.
What is RFID?
Radio frequency identification (RFID) uses electromagnetic fields for the collection of data in smart tags. Different kinds of RFID technology exist and the type of RFID and costs vary from business to business. In retail applications in particular – and increasingly across a range of sectors – RFID is giving real-time, accurate ways to track stock and fine-tune efficiencies.
Using RFID for asset tracking
OPERATIONS AND COSTS
There are myriad benefits associated with knowing the precise location of valuable assets. By knowing where equipment is, managers can more effectively plan, delegate, and assign tasks for uninterrupted operations. RFID empowers faster and more accurate pick and pack times, inventory updates, and shipment information. This, in turn, has the effect of improved customer satisfaction and profitability.
This is achieved with reduced need for resource-intensive manual checks and processes, with a saving of an average of 50-80% on labour.
By tracking the movements and activities of assets, managers are also able to devise well-timed maintenance schedules for critical equipment. Again, this capability allows for better planning, reduced downtime and expense – especially in the case of faults and repairs.
Manual tracking and associated processes come with the risk of human error, as well as the burden on human resources, administration, and opportunity costs. Automated RFID systems mean accurate readings – no matter how challenging the setting or circumstances – with real-time insights and detailed records on location and other metrics.
One of the most outstanding features of smart asset tracking is the role it plays in security and recoverability. Precise monitoring and management mean greater power to react in the event of loss or theft.
Using RFID for inventory management
FULL SUPPLY CHAIN VISIBILITY
Across the lifecycle of an asset, RFID technology collects and records data around individual stock items and assets and components. This means, from production to retail space, managers have access to insights to optimise stock management. By having meaningful, full-spectrum visibility of stock, you have a far reduced chance of missing a transaction owing to availability, with instant actionable insights to replenish supplies. By better meeting KPIs and terms of SLAs, you offer better service, which is better for business.
Where in-house maintenance is performed and there is a reliance on spare parts and tools to perform the work, there is immense value in knowing the availability of parts at any given time. Using RFID technology, managers operate with awareness around what is in their stores to conduct predictive, preventative, and reactive maintenance with high levels of efficiency.
The simplicity and effectiveness of RFID means it is a scalable solution. Whether used for SME’s storerooms or across multi-site warehouses, inventory management for both stationary and multi-location logistical applications can be monitored and recorded in real-time using RFID.
Good stock control removes the costs associated with over-stocking. This means rental amounts and space utilisation can be honed to prevent wasted costs and the effect of this on your business’s bottom line.
QUALITY CONTROL, TRACEABILITY, AND COMPLIANCE
Knowing the status of assets while they’re on your property is one thing, but there is tremendous value in tracking and monitoring goods on the move. RFID asset tracking and inventory management provides constant updates on assets for logistical purposes too – whether on pallets, planes, trucks, trains, or containers.
It is also possible for the data to provide information on conditions, which is especially useful if your business deals in perishables. It also holds benefits for establishing and maintaining high quality control standards and assisting with traceability in industries where this is legally mandated or in consumer interest. Additionally, cloud-based record-keeping simplifies administration for the purposes of compliance, saving even more time and money for business owners and managers.
Is it time to start using RFID asset tracking and inventory management in your business?
If you aren’t using RFID asset tracking and inventory management, the evolution of technology and increased affordability of these solutions are removing the barrier to entry for many businesses. Contact NFC Group to find out more about their RFID tracking systems.