Monday, January 27, 2014

RFID and Inventory Management

RFID (Radio-frequency identification) is a wireless technology that uses radio-frequency electromagnetic fields to transfer data to identify and track tags attached to objects. RFID tags are widely used for product authentication, theft prevention, supply chain, and inventory management.

The image shows a small RFID tag beside a grain of rice.

Case Study: I.T.'S International

I.T.'S International is a Japanese clothing and accessory manufacturer and operates 13 retail stores. I.T.'S used RFID tags to get a competitive advantage over its competitors in store management, operation, and logistics. Every product in the store has a product lable with an embedded RFID chip.

The efficiency of the process is best demonstrated in the video below. The following video is made by TAGSYS, a company that supplies RFID tags for several industries including fashion and airlines.

I.T.'S International carries about 15,000 items in each store. Therefore, performing a store inventory would take two employees over a period of four days. With the RFID technology, the process would take 2 hours for one employee to complete. As a result, I.T.'S performs store inventory monthly for more accurate inventory.

What is the next technology to improve inventory management? Are there any technologies under progress that could be used?


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