RFID System Planning – A Simple Overview

This document is planned as a short, simple summarized overview for companies thinking of, or wanting to, implement RFID technology within their supply chain operations. It is designed to increase consciousness of the needs, wants, and dos and don’ts when planning your RFID supply chain systems. A dictionary of RFID terms is included to assist you when investigating RFID system planning and technology. The single most important message is that distinct objectives and planning are paramount, and that input and assistance from independent expertise at a very early stage can save substantial time and money in the long term 13.56 mhz rfid.

It is recognized that RFID will enable, (and already has in some cases), a new era of business optimization, managing and increasing efficiencies throughout the supply chain. However knowing that it can assist your business, and being sympathetic to how it will do so, are different enough, let alone knowing how to actually put into practice a system that provides a sound return on the investment, whilst meeting your objectives.

The possible final cost of a fully included RFID supply chain operation would suggest that well-planned objectives and a Pilot Scheme within part of the supply chain would be the prudent route to take. This ensures that a final system that is properly particular and implemented and will actually produce the results that you both want and be expecting.

Business Drivers

The key driver for any investment of this type is the cost savings it will give up. However, RFID technology provides additional advantages of real-time and faster data capture, with a condensed human error factor. Unlike barcode-based systems, an RFID system can read the information on multiple tags without essentially requiring a line of prospect and without the need for a particular direction. The main business drivers throughout most sectors are as follows:

Optimize asset and resource utilization
Optimize operational processes & Manage supply chain exceptions
Reduce transportation costs
Reduce theft, wastage and loss
Increase financial return on investments
Optimize the labor force
Manage KPIs and benchmarking
Avoid the congestion of assets and bottlenecks in the supply chain
To reduce overall supply chain costs
To assist in making informed decisions in respect of the logistics “loop”

Where do you start?

The range of technologies, standards and options for RFID systems is too numerous to list here, and there is a danger of over-specifying the technology required.

Providing that the system objective is not forgotten during the requirement and implementation stage, then an appropriate system integrator will ensure that there is not an over-investment, or too much needless information being shaped. It is therefore crucial that the functionality requirements and objectives are well thought out and defined in advance of partnering with a suitable System Integrator, purposely in relation to the management information 13.56 mhz rfid tags you wish to extract from the system.

It is widely acknowledged by all who have conducted pilot schemes and RFID implementation that the most critical factor is to conduct a pilot scheme with partners that have a proven track record, and are not learning as they go along. Therefore a System Integrator with relevant industry segment experience is vital. From experience it is preferable, in the early planning stages, to have a sovereign project coordinator/facilitator assisting your project team. This individual should be divided from the Integrator and individual system/hardware suppliers working together on the project and not part of any individual departments within your business that may prejudice the direction and objectives of the team.