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GS1 US Survey Finds Strong RFID Adoption

The results, released this week, found that 78 percent of retailers received at least some RFID-tagged merchandise (primarily apparel and footwear), with those retailers receiving, on average, 47 percent of those goods with EPC UHF RFID inlays.
By Claire Swedberg

"Retailers are certainly at the forefront of RFID adoption, because they feel the most pressure to act on what the consumer wants," Nuce explains, "particularly as it relates to omnichannel engagement." Manufacturers have been asked by their retailer customers to collaborate on RFID implementations, with a goal of boosting sales opportunities to benefit both parties.

RFID can build stronger relationships between suppliers and retailers, Nuce adds, since they can share data in order to verify shipment accuracy and prevent out-of-stock events. "Manufacturers can also leverage source-tagged items to gain visibility and measure accuracy throughout their supply chain," she adds, "so while the initial compelling event might be a retailer request, there are significant upstream supply chain benefits suppliers can achieve."

Demographic breakdown of all 801 survey respondents, based on sector (View a larger version.)
Nuce speculates that GS1's release of the Tagged Item Performance Protocol (TIPP) guideline (see GS1 Expects Tagged-Item Performance Protocol Guideline to Boost RFID Adoptions) is helping to fuel RFID technology deployments. "Tagged-item performance was not previously clearly defined," she says, "and now that it is, performance can be verified independently by retailers, suppliers or any third party, allowing for more innovation and expansion of RFID programs."

According to Nuce, her organization now plans to conduct a similar survey annually, in order to document progress for RFID technology in the retail and manufacturing spaces.

"GS1 thought it was important to measure adoption and usage standards, so that we can share the results with our members," Nuce explains. "Our main goals are to engage the [retailing and manufacturing] industry, encourage them to adopt [adoption] standards and then drive the usage of those standards forward."

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