RFID has disrupted the traditional stock control and inventory management system. With fast, easy, and improved accuracy, RFID inventory management solution is the best choice of industry owners with inventory and stock management needs.
A recent survey by Statista among industry professionals whether which technologies they are investing in. The survey found that 45.1% of industry leaders are investing in “warehouse automation.”
The trend shows RFID inventory tracking systems are gaining momentum as the technology is helping businesses increase their sales, customer service and satisfaction phenomenally.
If you are struggling with your inventory management and looking to integrate RFID inventory management solutions, then we are here to help explore RFID, its benefits and how it works.
So, let’s dig deep into RFID and see how it eliminates inventory management issues.
But first, wouldn’t you like to know;
What is RFID Technology?
RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tracking system lets users access detailed information including quantity, model, color, size, and more using electromagnetic fields. It provides stable, yet efficient inventory management facilities.
Simply put, with RFID tags, warehouses can automatically identify and track tags attached to objects. The inventory owners can keep the stocking hassle out of inventory and improve security.
RFID vs Barcode
RFID vs barcode is the common question from almost every inventory pro. For many, it’s the difference they like to know about rather they seek suggestions about which one to choose from the two in unique circumstances.
Even though RFID and barcode technologies are similar in a few key ways, they differ in some ways. Let’s explore the similarities and differences between the two tech tracking systems.
RFID vs Barcode: Similarities
RFID vs Barcode: Dissimilarities
These are some of primary differences and similarities between barcode and RFID which you can explore. You can choose anyone based on the need.
What is RFID Inventory Management?
RFID Inventory management refers to the process of managing products or controlling stocks in warehouses or a retail store by using RFID tags. The technology is boon for the industry with inventory needs. It helps increase efficiency, reduce operating costs, meet market demands, and streamline business.
More than that, an RFID inventory system is significant to regulate the planned course of production and stock of materials.
RFID Market Share
According to IDTechEx, the RFID market is expected to reach $13 Billion in 2022 from $11.6 Billion in 2019.
According to the 2019 report, 20 billion RFID tags for inventory management were expected to be sold in 2019, that is 2.5 billion higher than in 2018.
Let’s take a look at the image for more clarity;
However, Markets and Markets reported, the global RFID market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.7% between 2017 and 2023. The RFID market was valued at $17 billion in 2016.
Whereas, the Americas is projected to possess the largest share RFID market while Asia Pacific, Europe, Middle East, and Africa will be next in the line.
How does RFID technology work?
RFID is a bit similar to barcode technology, enabling inventory to recognize locations and track tagged items. However, it does not require reading laser light to read the printed barcode; instead, it uses its low-power radio frequencies to collect and store data.
Leveraging RFID technology in the warehouse management system can help you automate data collection. The object information is transferred through radio wave frequency. For example, the image given above suggests that RFID tags, a computer chip attached to objects release information to the computer through RFID readers. The information is caught by RFID antenna and read by a scanner/reader/interrogator, and that data is transferred to the connected computer.
Pros and Cons of RFID Inventory Management
Even though innovation is all meant to benefit, it comes with uninvited harms. However, these cons can be eliminated after observing precautions. RFID follows similar characteristics. It comes with both benefits and drawbacks, though they are avoidable.
Faster scanning: As we have already discussed that RFID does not require line-of-sight to scan an object, it’s near field technology and can keeping scanner near the range can track the RFID tags easily. Besides, multiple RFID tags can be tracked at a time, unlike the barcode with which only one tag can be scanned at a time.
Save costs: RFID can reduce distribution center labor costs up to 50-80%. Whether it is inventory check-in, orderly counts, pickup/arriving times, packing times or shipment verification, all these activities require dedicated human resources to manage whereas RFID can do it in seconds.
Improves visibility: With real-time tracking and faster scanning, the visibility of inventory gets better. You can easily know inventory whereabouts with the real-time location. Besides, RFID inventory management software can also help you track returned and recalled items.
Optimize your inventory: Utilizing the versatility of smart inventory systems, businesses can optimize business processes, whether it is to track objects, automate processes and equipment and smart scaling.
Strengthen ties between suppliers and customers: When you have proper RFID stock control software in place, you enjoy enhanced relationships with customers and suppliers. The software will enable you to track your buyers’ behavior, including accuracy, error, fluctuation in terms of inventory demand and supply. It will also allow you to focus more on client satisfaction —means your biggest conversion issue is shorted out.
Costly RFID tags: As compared to the barcode, RFID tags are pricier, and that may create some hindrance for startups and entrepreneurs. Usually, RFID tags are suitable for higher-value goods, though ROI analysis is needed to ensure you don’t have to wear loss.
Radio interference problems: If you need RFID tags for metal, liquids or other goods alike, then you may have to invest in more expensive RFID tags or may require multiple types of tags.
Higher upgrading costs: Upgrading RFID tracking software, equipment, and facilities are costly affairs. Besides, cooperation from suppliers, customers and transport companies are another hassle to look after.
Types of RFID tags and readers
Radio frequency identification (RFID) technology is widely popular across all industries, with warehouse control and inventory needs. Therefore, you can explore a variety of different types of RFID technology, including tags and readers, suit varied application requirements.
The RFID tags ban categorized into two main categories;
Active tags: It refers to the RFID tags that use their own transmitter and power source. Usually, they are powered by external energy sources, such as batteries and that enables the tags to be readable at large distances from the RFID scanner or reader.
Passive tags: It refers to the RFID tags that use RFID reader’s interrogating device to power itself and to transmit data back to the scanning device.
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Applications of RFID Technology
Mainly, the RFID technology is best used for manufacturing, service and retail chain sectors. It can be used for various other purposes and applications as well.
In healthcare, RFID can help hospitals track patients.
In farms, RFID technology can help owners count cattle and know their whereabouts.
Companies can use RFID technology to track employees’ movement when they are out of the workplace.
RFID can easily track the activities of inmates and help security personnel manage the cells without putting so much effort.
RFID can smoothen the intracity transportation system, such as the RFID tags attached to VIP vehicles, police jeep, and others can easily be tracked and managed.
In aviation, the RFID technology can make manager count baggage.
Whereas, RFID tags attached to the parking area can easily let drivers know the empty parking space.
Overall, RFID can be used in plenty of applications with tracking needs. All you need to ensure whether your business needs an RFID scanning system. You can connect with an expert to affirm your needs.
Should You Use RFID for Stock Management?
This is ultimately your call to decide whether or not you should use RFID technology for inventory management or stock control purposes.
However, it is advised to use RFID to boost productivity and product safety. In the paragraph above (Pros and Cons of RFID stock control), we have discussed the benefits of using RFID technology in inventory management. You can revisit the section for better understanding.
When you like to use RFID tags, you need a robust tracking system to provide you seamless services. You can connect with a reputed software development company like us to get the solutions.
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When it comes to RFID inventory management, you need two things: an RFID chip (hardware) and an RFID tracking device with integrated RFID tracking software. Everything matters with equal importance, though having a robust RFID tracking software with specific industry needs is of utmost importance. You need an authentic and reliable source to develop the software. We at Excellent Webworld ensure that you get suitable RFID software at a reasonable cost.
We have been serving industries for many years and hence we are well versed with every nitty-gritty of RFID and its applications. We can help you make the best use of technology that earns you profits without making any big bang on the money. Let’s connect.