As discussed previously, RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) is used to increase operational efficiency in warehouses and distribution centers. Part 2 will discuss Real-Time Asset Management, Warehouse Shipping, and Improved Traceability.

Real-Time Asset Management

RFID can significantly help with asset management. Either an active or passive RFID tag can be attached to containers, equipment, and even people. This provides the location and status of items in real-time. Particular assets may require special tags in closed looped systems that involve returnable items.

The advent of RTLS (Real-Time Location Systems) has created a system that eases the implementation of real-time asset management and provides increasingly granular data. The Department of Veterans Affairs implemented a RTLS deployment project in every one of its hospitals and several VA outpatient pharmacies. Several million RFID tags were attached to medical equipment, supplies, and surgical instruments to obtain real-time data regarding these assets.

Warehouse Shipping

After a warehouse dispatches an order, a retailer can get information on its expected arrival. RFID-tagged products can be directly tracked to a store so the successful arrival of the pallet carrying them can be verified. Data produced by the shipment can undergo analysis and any issues can be reported for rapid resolution. The use of RFID for receiving improves operational efficiency and accuracy by eliminating errors from manual entries.

Walmart was one of the first companies that required their main suppliers to tag every delivery. Other larger retailers began their own RFID implementation in the last few years. Subsequently, this technology has expanded in use and has been adopted by the agriculture, tech, and tourism industries.

Improved Traceability

Real-time equipment tracing and accurate inventory management are made possible through the use of RFID tags. This technology has been employed by the government, healthcare facilities, educational institutions, and libraries to track the data regarding their assets. Their records are stored in databases, which can be accessed and updated as needed.

Part 3 will summarize the Benefits of RFID Technology.

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