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RFID for Field Service Inventory

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RFID technology works well within your warehouses and across your sites. However, how can you track field inventory when it is beyond your four walls? RFID tags can be applied to your products and sent into the field on company service trucks. Using GPS-tracking for your vehicles, it is possible to track inventory in the field by vehicle. As products are removed from service trucks, vehicle-mounted antennas can scan the inventory and automatically deduct from on-hand quantities. When RFID is integrated with your ERP, additional automation can create a packing slip and invoice to the customer based on the current location. Warranty-tracking is easily captured by the transactions.

In the meantime, replenishment of field inventory is prepared within the four walls. When the company service truck returns to home base, reloading the vehicle is a quick process that does not require human interaction with your ERP. The cost savings can be significant, and inventory accuracy improves with this replenishment process..

Since inventory is evaluated across all field service trucks, rebalancing products is an important step to ensure that enough of the appropriate field inventory is available in individual field service trucks. Each return to base could result in a refresh of field inventory based on historical transactions and forecasts.

Lot-tracked products with expiration dates are visible on each service truck. This enforces expiring products to be used first (FIFO basis), and any expired products are returned to home base for replacement or re-certification.

Quartz Group is developing an Entity Tracker that will enable tracking of all RFID-enabled products, equipment, and fixed assets. RFID integration with your ERP and our Azure Cloud allows tracking of these and more entities. A future phase will include using RFID to automatically capture labor when operations are being performed on jobs or work orders and calculating move, dwell, and queue times.

Matt Hellwig

Regional Business Manager

Epicor Manufacturing and Distribution certified consultant. Matt has 19 years of experience in manufacturing and manufatrucing software consulting.