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Endries International Simplifies Parts-Inventory Management

The global fasteners and production supplies distributor has designed its own RFID-enabled kiosk to identify empty component bins and automatically trigger replenishment orders.
By Claire Swedberg

The company uses a customized version of S3edge's Spotlight web-based software to manage the kiosks. The software, residing on an Endries-hosted server, captures and stores data about each tag read.

The resulting RFID-based system, known as PULSE, works like this: When a worker empties a bin of Endries-supplied product, he or she drops it down a chute in the PULSE kiosk. A reader antenna in the chute captures the ID number encoded to one of the bin's RFID tags. The kiosk displays the refurbishment order on its video screen and forwards the data to Endries' server, where the Spotlight software captures the information and determines which bin at that customer's site requires replenishment. Within one minute, Fischer says, from virtually anywhere in the world and at any time, Endries can thus capture the customer's order.

The PULSE kiosk includes an RFID reader that identifies each empty parts bin and automatically generates a refurbishment order, which is then displayed on its video screen.
The replenishment parts are then pulled at Endries' warehouse and delivered to the customer's site, where an Endries representative restocks the proper bin. He or she can use a mobile phone to access the consumption and replenishment data that the PULSE system provides. The process for the customer is simple: toss the empty bin down the kiosk's chute, and Endries handles the rest.

Endries first tested the kiosk at a few customer sites in March 2015, and now offers the system to all customers and prospects. "The feedback on PULSE that we are getting from the market is outstanding—something so simple in concept being such a game-changer for the OEM customer," Fischer says.

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