Why does every business need to track their inventory?
Small business owners of today have considerable advantages over those of only a few decades ago. Technological advances make many business aspects more efficient and offer a number of effective tools. From basic information technology to logistics, marketing, and human resources, there are affordable and efficient ways of performing manual functions and tasks that were previously tedious, including ways of Inventory tracking.
Inventory tasks include:
- Planning for seasonal activities for companies shipping large quantities of products
- Anticipating shortages
- Anticipating growth in demand from promotions and added marketing success
- Providing the necessary financial reporting information
An effective inventory approach will:
- Achieve maximum discounts on the purchase level
- Improve negotiating a position with vendors and shipping sources
- Help meet overall customer expectations and needs
- Control Working capital investment
- Minimize the cost of ordering too often and the need for rush delivery
- Minimize shortage and out-of-stock costs
- Lower capital costs for excess inventory
- Reduce losses due to outdated inventories
Radio frequency identification (RFID) is a technology that creates visibility and helps to control the warehouse inventory.
Omnia produces RFID tags which are small microchips plus a small aerial that may contain a range of digital information about a specific item. RFID Tags are embedded in plastic, paper or similar material and attached to a product or packaging, a pallet or container, or even a van or truck. An RFID reader interviews the tag, transmitting and receiving radio signals from and to the tag. Using special computer software the information the reader collects is collected and processed. Readers can be placed in a factory or warehouse at different positions to show when goods are being moved.
RFID technology helps to identify and record individual products and components and track them from production to point-of-sale throughout the verticals. This process does not require direct line-of-sight and creates inventory visibility in hand, thus helping to make proper use of it. With the help of this technology, each inventory/stock movement can be automatically stored on the system.
The use of RFID tagging for stock control offers several advantages over other methods such as barcodes:
- tags can be read remotely, often at a distance of several meters
- several tags can be read at once, enabling an entire pallet-load of products to be checked simultaneously
- tags can be given unique identification codes so that individual products can be tracked
- RFID tags can be overwritten, enabling information about items to be updated, eg when they are moved from one part of a factory to another
Over the past few years, the costs associated with RFID tagging have fallen and continue to fall. The benefits of more efficient stock control and enhanced security make it particularly attractive to retailers, wholesalers or distributors stocking a wide range of items, and to manufacturers producing volume runs of products for various customers.