inventory control

shop inventoryIf we take the example of clothing, we can identify why RFID is so successful.

In a traditional store environment, the codes have to be within the "line of site" of the barcode reader. This requires manual scanning or a conveyor-like process to position the barcode and scanner.

RFID tags can serve a number of functions, including anti-theft (both front and back of store) and out of stock measurement. It is in the second example that RFID tags have proved extremely successful. Manual intervention is labor intensive, costly, and error-prone. In addition, scheduled scanning or manual methods cannot ensure the inventory remains up-to-date, due to oversights, errors, and internal shrinkage. 

What happens in practice is that the customer arrives at the racks and maybe they cannot find the item they are looking for in their size or colour.

If they are lucky enough to find a member of staff to ask, there is a long checking process to see if the item is in stock and can be fetched from storage. The result - either the shop needs to carry additional stock "just in case", or, more likely, the customer simply goes elsewhere. In the traditional retail outlet, it is common to lose a client because they cannot find the goods on the rack.

The benefits of RFID in inventory control

    • Provides total asset visibility
    • Gives full inventory history
    • Allows reduced inventory-stocking levels
    • Facilitates "Just-in-Time" deliveries
    • Provides full process control for products in the facility
    • Reduces lead-time
    • Shortens cross docking time
    • Speeds up sort/pick rate
    • Reduces shelf space
    • Provides higher-level security
    • Reduces errors
    • Reduces overall cost of operations



In a RFID environment inventory can be updated in real time without product movement, scanning or human involvement. Fully automated systems allows inventory status to be determined, and shipping and receiving documents to be generated automatically. The system could also trigger automatic orders for products that are low in inventory. Intelligent systems link into inventory systems to tell the store manager if the store is "out of stock" of an item, or if the item is in the warehouse when it should be in the front of store.

The benefits of "being in stock" are obvious:

  • Fewer lost customers
  • All this is achieved without having to employ additional staff to ensure stock is in place
  • Less total stock as the system can be tied closely to real time sales and linked to your suppliers
  • Less shrinkage as RFID can be used to spot when stock is disappearing from inventory in an unaccountable manner 

contact usTo learn more about how Action through RFID can help you find the right technology for your application, call today.

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