RFID (Radio Frequency Identification)
Getting to know each and every one of your products
With RFID you can identify every single one of your products with a serialised number. This enables you to take inventory management to the next level. Item level tagging lets you know where each individual product is along your supply chain – giving you much more visibility of your inventory and operational processes. With accurate information you have the flexibility to act in real time – which is vital for delivering the service your omnichannel shoppers expect.
What is RFID?
RFID refers to the use of radio waves to read and capture information stored on a tag attached to an object. An RFID solution is principally made up of four components:
|Feature of RFID||Operational potential||Benefit|
|No line of sight required||Automate processes||Reduced labour cost for manual scans|
|Unattended item level identification||Reader network can automatically identify objects at the item level||Higher level of inventory accuracy
Enables tracking that is difficult/cost prohibitive with barcodes
|Data capacity||Provide additional item tracking information (lot, batch, product history)||Reduced need for internal system integration
Improved granularity of data Better inventory management
Higher level of visibility and traceability of products
|Read-write capability||Tag can serve as a portable database||Reduced systems integration
Reduced data storage
|Reading speed||Higher speed – reads multiple items simultaneously||Elimination of manual processes and labour for repetitive scans|
|Durability||“Permanently” tag assets or reusable containers||Eliminate time/labour associated with re-labelling items/assets over time
Enables tracking of assets/items that are not suitable for barcodes
What‘s EPC enabled RFID?
Electronic Product Code (EPC) enabled RFID is the global standard maintained by GS1 for RFID technology. Created in collaboration with RFID suppliers and retail users, the EPC standard defines three key elements of the technology:
The data structure for tags is a simple extension of the widely used GS1 system of product identifiers. EPC RFD codes consist of each product’s Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) – these are sometimes called UPC or EANs – with the addition of a serial number for each product instance and some instructions for the reader.
The EPC standard provides a blueprint for how tags and readers talk to each other – this means that as long as both are EPC compliant, any combination of tags and readers will work together. In order to do this, the industry has reduced the variability of tags and readers, uniting in the use of passive, Ultra High Frequency (UHF) tags.
The final part of the EPC standard – how the reader links the data that it captures back into your systems – ultimately ensures the interoperability of your RFID solution. This enables the efficient and automated communication of data across your network of departments, suppliers and partners.
Use our ROI calculator which has been developed, in conjunction with RFID Journal, to give a basic understanding of the indicative costs and potential benefits you are likely to incur when implementing RFID technology
Expert advice from a neutral source – putting you on the right track