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Can RFID Help Ensure Order Fulfillment Accuracy?

Posted By RFID Journal, 05.05.2009
I work for an apparel company. We source our goods in Asia, then sell them under our own brand name. The problem we have is that what we order from Asia is often not what arrives at our distribution center. Our partners in Asia say they ship what we order, and that the problem lies with our distribution center staff. But our staff there says the problem is with the Asian suppliers. Can RFID help us ensure that what we order is what is ultimately shipped and received?

—Name withheld

RFID technology can certainly help with this problem. Counting individual items can be costly and time-consuming, and also creates an opportunity for those doing the counting to steal the items being received.

One retailer we know of ships RFID-enabled hangtags to manufacturers in Asia, and has them apply the tags after the products are finished. They are then placed in boxes or shipping containers, and the tags are read to confirm the items match the purchase order.

When the goods arrive at the company's DC, they are scanned once more to confirm all items were received. The same process is utilized when the items are picked and sent to stores. This not only reduces fraud and theft, but also improves inventory accuracy.

—Mark Roberti, Editor,
RFID Journal

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