Consumer satisfaction with the quality of your products is clearly important, but the service you provide before and after the sale is equally important to any business, but often overlooked as benefiting the bottom line. However, providing efficient tracking and tracing of shipped products enhances customer loyalty and your company image. Obviously, satisfied customers are a company’s greatest asset.
Track/Trace solutions including software and Automatic identification technologies such as barcoding and RFID are both reliable and effective in ensuring the efficient delivery of materials and components to you and to your customers.
According to Claes Fornell, University of Michigan, Ross School of Business and The American Customer Satisfaction Index, “As long as repeat business is important, and as long as customers have a chance to go somewhere else, employees must deliver high levels of satisfaction for a company to be successful.” In other words, satisfied customers often become repeat customers and one way to ensure satisfaction is to provide complete visibility from sale to delivery.
Simply stated, an efficient logistics supply chain accurately tracks and traces the delivered materials used to create finished products and then stores the inventory until picking, packing, shipping, and delivery of sold products are completed.
Whether a business leapt at the opportunity to become one of the first suppliers with RFID tagged products or now finds itself currently being mandated to employ the technology, the implementation costs and the potential rewards are the same.
To maximize the benefits of RFID, it is critical to view its capability to drive business process improvement, increase supply chain efficiency and ultimately improve bottom line results. From this perspective, the up front capital costs for hardware, engineering consulting costs, opportunity costs, ongoing cost of tags and, in a manual environment, labor associated with the RFID tagging of products are deemed a necessary investment.
Rather than merely RFID tagging products to satisfy the requirements of their largest customers, companies can move from seeing RFID deployment as just the cost of doing business to an opportunity to enhance productivity and profitability. Understanding the impact of data collection and tracking as well as data integration is essential to RFID optimization.
Tracking and managing valuable assets is major concern for many industries especially in manufacturing and warehouse environments. Whether you’re tracking a work-in-process or general inventory and assets, the greater accuracy and closer to real-time visibility you can achieve is directly connected to business success.
RFID-based systems provide an immediate and non-line of sight means to capture your inventory or asset collection. However, the most common passive RFID tags and readers have a limited range and still require a user to scan the tags or pass them through a fixed reader portal. This is where Zebra’s WhereNET active RFID solutions can provide the range that can be used over your entire facility, yielding maximum coverage. With maximum coverage you will have real-time visibility into your entire business and operations, providing you with actionable data in order to make smarter decisions.
Despite the explosion of online choices, customers still value seeing and touching merchandise firsthand – an experience only available to them in a brick-and-mortar store. When retailers add the cutting-edge benefits of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology to that unique advantage, they help close the all-to-common gaps in service, information and inventory of traditional retail and open more opportunities for sales and customer satisfaction.
RFID empowers retailers like never before, elevating shopping into an enriching and positive experience. With RFID as part of a total solution, retailers can greet customers by name, impress them with a wider selection of merchandise, and better serve them with faster assistance, deeper product information and more personalized promotions. What’s more, retailers can turn shopping time into social time with RFID enabled kiosks that enable customers to interact with their social network of family and friends. And when customers are ready to buy, so are retailers. RFID applications can identify merchandise, recognize loyalty accounts and facilitate mobile transactions. Even fulfilling customers’ needs is easier using RFID. Retailers gain real-time visibility into inventory, so they can expedite fulfillment of orders from closer locations. In short, RFID – along with advanced retail technology – can help keep customers happy and coming back in this intensely competitive industry.
When you think about RFID one of your first thoughts probably isn’t how it can benefit your pet cat. Many pets today have an RFID chip in them for identification purposes but beyond that, the technology doesn’t really come into play in their day to day lives.
Ben Milliam realized that he could enhance his cat’s general curiosity and ‘mobile’ hunting drive with the aid of some RFID tagged wiffle balls and a modified electronic feeder he embedded an RFID reader in. Now his cat, Monkey, gets a taste of being an outdoor ‘hunting’ cat in the comforts of home.
You can find a detailed breakdown of Ben’s process and how be built everything on his site.
With the introduction of NFC, RFID has become a trendy technology, but is it really a necessity for your business? Let’s go over some of the differences between barcodes and RFID:
Line of Sight – Rather than using light to collect or read a number from a barcode, radio waves are used to read a number from the RFID tag. Therefore, RFID does not require a line of sight to operate, but rather you can wave the RFID reader to read the tags.
Multiple Item Scanning – Since RFID does not require line of sight it is not necessary to present each tag to the reader separately (as is required for barcodes); instead, all tags within the range of the reader can be read almost simultaneously as they pass the reader.
Automation & Accuracy – Barcodes require a person to manually read each individual barcode, which can lead to manual read errors and mis-scanning. RFID, on the other hand, is a fully automated solution with a higher accuracy rate.
Although there is a huge savings in RFID technology from a resource, time and accuracy standpoint, we rarely recommend a business migrating from a completely manual process to a RFID solution. Companies that currently incorporate barcodes face the best return on investment from a RFID solution. Talk to one of our experts today to get a full assessment of your business.
Frick expands its SmartMark product line with the addition of the new WF-SM-SI01 insulator label. As electric utilities, including transmission and distribution companies, modernize power grids, many are discovering the advantages of outfitting insulators and other equipment with RFID tags and labels for future maintenance and inventory tracking purposes. Management, deployment, and replacement of insulators using RFID brings accuracy and efficiency to the process of power delivery.
It is an exciting time. You have just received a new RFID handheld computer (aka RFID reader) and RFID tags to perform your asset tracking tasks and can hardly wait to start playing with them. Maybe you are in a business space with office and IT equipment scattered among cubicles. Or, perhaps you are managing a tool crib or equipment storage facility. Either way, this endeavor you are about to undertake warrants careful consideration and experimentation. Some advice from ASAP Systems, experts in providing asset tracking systems, can help guide you from the get-go. So before you dive into the project head first, here are a few tips to help you utilize your RFID scanner to the best of its capabilities.
1. Proper RFID Scanner and Tag Positioning
In order to get the ultimate read-range when scanning a RFID tag with a RFID handheld computer, make sure the scanner is held at the same level or height as the tag and at a direct-facing angle. Attempting to “shoot” the scanner from odd angles, as well as below or above the tag, will greatly reduce the distance from which you can scan. The steeper the read angle, the worse the read range will be.
To compete effectively in today’s business environment, you need to be more responsive, more nimble and more efficient. To protect ever-thinner profit margins, you need more data, more accurate intelligence and more streamlined processes in less time using less money. Your supply chain is more global and complex, so you need more real-time, error-free inventory and tracking processes to maintain accountability and productivity.
Enterprises from retail to healthcare/pharmaceuticals are turning to automated RFID systems to gather the business-critical asset and tracking data they need to improve processes, productivity, and profitability. As the need grows for faster, more reliable data collection in hectic business environments, so does the demand for higher performance RFID hardware. Motorola is meeting that demand with a new standard in business-class RFID performance – the Motorola FX7500 Fixed RFID Reader.
Hospital administrators are finding that inexpensive and unobtrusive radio frequency identification tags are saving thousands of dollars while increasing quality of care and patient satisfaction.
At the brand-new, 58-bed Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Alliance in Fort Worth, everything that moves is being tagged, including high-value assets, wristbands on patients and the badges of all staff members.
Over the last year, RFID has saved the Texas Health Alliance $65,000 per month just in rental fees, said Kathi Cox, a project coordinator at the hospital’s parent company Texas Health Resources.