Radio Frequency Identification
Learn more about RFIDData Sheet

What is RFID?

RFID or radio frequency identification is a system that transmits identity in the form of a unique serial number of a product wirelessly. RFID, a type of Auto-ID technology is used to reduce time and labor and improve real time data accuracy. Most commonly, an RFID tag consists of a microchip attached to a radio antenna mounted on a substrate. This technology connects products to the Internet for tracking purposes so that information can be shared with businesses across the supply chain.

There are two types of RFID systems-active and passive. Passive RFID tags do not have transmitters and simply reflect back radio waves that originate at the reader antenna. Active system RFID transponders (a microchip with an antenna) are placed on products then information is accessed using a reader to pass the information to a computer. Active RFID tags are typically used for large assets including cargo containers, rail cars and containers that are transported over long distances. Passive RFID tags lack power sources and transmitter, require no maintenance and are less expensive than active RFID tags.

In tracking products throughout the supply chain, often active and passive RFID systems are combined to provide gain visibility where products are in real time. Used with GPS technology, goods can now be tracked while in transit. This can be especially useful in helping to reduce theft as products travel across the supply chain.

Benefits of Using RFID

  • Decreases the need for manual checks and counts
  • Reduces inventory handling costs
  • Decreases claims and deductions
  • Helps to reduce out-of-stocks and improve inventory turns
  • Helps prevent the distribution and sale of counterfeit products
  • Increases distribution center productivity
  • Helps to create a more adaptable supply chain
  • Reduces waste
  • Decreases the need for manual checks and counts

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How is RFID Used?


Product Tracking and Supply Chain Management

  • RFID tags and labels can be attached during production such as in the apparel industry so that data can be read throughout entire supply chain

Inventory Systems

  • Provides accurate info about current inventory despite size, shape and environmental concerns
  • Helps ensure security of the inventory
  • Can help organizations track and audit their records
  • Use for case and pallet tracking

Asset Management

  • Use RFID technology with web based management tools to monitor assets and make critical business decisions from anywhere in the world
  • Web based applications ensure that manufacturers, contractors and others can be granted access to update asset data, such as inspection history, maintenance records and more to ensure that the end user has accurate real time data
  • Item level retail uses: improves efficiency, product availability and acts as a form of electronic surveillance
  • Used for high value cargo and precious metals

What Industries Use RFID?

  • Aerospace
  • Apparel
  • Automotive
  • Logistics
  • Manufacturing
  • Medical Devices
  • Defense
  • Health Care
  • Retail
  • Transportation
  • Chemical
  • Consumer Packaged Goods
  • Packaging
  • Pharmaceutical

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