In the manufacturing sector, it can feel like demands and disruptions have never been higher. Thankfully, businesses can turn to innovative, trusted solutions like RFID to ease the stress.
In this post, we’ll look at how RFID technology can be used to level up your inventory management. We’ll cover the basics and benefits so that you have all the information you need to make the right decision for your business.
What is RFID?
RFID technology is a system that uses small tags, or chips, to track and identify objects. The tags are read by a special reader that can scan and store data about each object.
These tags can be attached to packages, fabrics, and products, and in some cases, they can even be embedded in the products themselves.
You can install sensors throughout your warehouse and supply chain to instantly scan the RFID tags. Your products/packages will be automatically tracked and counted as production occurs. While that likely sounds valuable already, there are several unexpected benefits and opportunities that this can open up.
How to use RFID technology to improve your inventory management
By using RFID tags throughout your warehouse, you can start to improve your inventory management. This is key, as inventory management is the backbone of moving products through your supply chain smoothly and successfully.
This can also help you keep track of your inventory levels, and it can help you find items that are missing or misplaced. Often, missing, lost, or stolen inventory is considered a loss. But with these tags, you can pinpoint where items went missing, leading to recovery and identifying why the items went missing in the first place.
In short, RFID technology can be a starting point for changing how you think about your inventory management.
How RFID can help with inventory control
Now that you know what RFID technology is and how to use it to improve your inventory processes, let’s start diving into the use cases and benefits that might not be as obvious. By going through these benefits, you can see how investing in RFID can boost your inventory management.
Automatically track your inventory as it moves through your warehouse
By tagging your inventory with RFID tags and using RFID readers to follow the tags, you can gain real-time visibility into your inventory levels, allowing you to manage your inventory more effectively.
This automation can save your business and workers a lot of time, allowing you to produce more materials, cut costs, and increase profits simultaneously.
It can also enable tracking in situations that might not have previously been possible. Barcode scanning, for instance, requires a line of sight, limiting its applications. RFID technology doesn’t have this limitation, making it more versatile and available.
The power of real-time visibility
By knowing where your inventory is at all times, you can ensure that you have the right inventory levels on hand and that your inventory is being used effectively. Additionally, real-time visibility can help you identify and solve problems more quickly because you will be able to see when and where inventory problems occur.
This is essential in a world where supply chain disruptions can come from many places. Knowing where you stand at all times is critical, and it’s something that RFID technology can enable.
You can even connect your real-time insights to apps and services you already use, making those apps and services that much more effective.
Increasing the accuracy of your inventory counts
As we mentioned, RFID tags can be read even if they are not in the line of sight of the reader. This means you don’t have to rely on manual counting methods, which can be error-prone.
Additionally, RFID can help you reduce the time needed to count your inventory, so you won’t have to manually count each item.
Reduce your manual inventory processes
By automatically tracking your inventory levels, RFID can help you reduce the time and labour needed to manually count your inventory.
That freed-up labour can reduce operational costs, put workers on more specialised tasks, reduce the size of your workforce, or all of the above. Ultimately, it’s about providing your business with more freedom and flexibility.
Improve your traceability (especially in the food and beverages sector)
RFID can improve your traceability, especially in the food and beverage sector. By tagging your products with RFID tags, you can use RFID readers to track the movement of your products through your supply chain easily.
This traceability can help you ensure the safety of your products, allowing you to quickly identify and recall any products that may be contaminated.
Perhaps one of the least anticipated aspects of embracing RFID inventory management is that it can lead to faster shipments. RFID can help reduce the time needed to prepare your shipments since you don’t have to manually scan and track each product. This can help you meet higher demand and reduce your overall operating hours.
Putting your data to work can increase your productivity
Tracking the movement of your inventory through your warehouse with RFID technology means you can identify bottlenecks and areas of inefficiency. And by analysing your RFID data, you can develop trends and forecasts that can help you more effectively manage your inventory.
That data can go a long way toward making your business more competitive, efficient, and productive.
Embrace RFID technology and enjoy the benefits of increased inventory control
Using RFID to improve your inventory control isn’t a far-off possibility. It’s something you can invest in and take action on today. For more information about using RFID technology and other smart ways to improve your inventory management, reach out to the team here at Workhorse today.