Home Internet of Things Aerospace Apparel Energy Defense Health Care Logistics Manufacturing Retail

RFID Automates Invoice Data for Bulk Storage Facility

MSC Distribution has reduced labor costs related to inventory tracking and has also improved invoice accuracy, with an automated RFID system from Advanced Mobile Group that tracks when goods are moved into and out of storage.
By Claire Swedberg
May 09, 2017

More than a year after installing an ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID system to track the movement of its bulk storage, MSC Distribution reports that it has reduced labor costs and boosted invoicing accuracy, and that it can share data with customers regarding the locations of their goods. The solution, provided by Doylestown, Penn.-based technology company Advanced Mobile Group (AMG), enables MSC to identify which zone each tagged product enters and leaves through, thereby ensuring that pallets or packages of goods do not end up missing or fail to meet schedules.

MSC Distribution, a dry and liquid bulk packing and storage third-party logistics (3PL) firm, built a new facility to serve the industrial triangle between Houston, San Antonio and Austin, Texas. Thousands of products move through the facility and spend at least some time in storage. Those items vary from palletized dry goods to drums and bagged goods, and are typically stored or moved around the facility via a forklift.

AMG installed RFID readers at zone egresses and at dock doors so it could identify when items enter or exit a specific area.
Managing the billing for each stored item can be complex, the company reports, since the kind of storage provided affects the price. For instance, MSC Distribution offers cold storage, as well as areas with higher ceilings or various types of lighting, each of which requires a different price for customers. Traditionally, it was difficult for the company to identify where bulk goods were being stored for invoicing purposes, as well as when available space might be under-utilized to improve efficiency. In addition, if a product is stored in one area for an unexpectedly long time, tracking the exact time that it remains there can be difficult.

The location of goods is especially important when it comes to volatile products, such as chemical agents used during fracking and other processes. Ensuring that those products are monitored, and that their whereabouts is known at all times, is critical to the company.

MSC Distribution wanted to automate the process of collecting goods storage data for billing. It also sought to share that information with customers so that they could make more strategic decisions themselves, such as scheduling the pickup of an item that has been in storage for a long period of time, or understanding whether their goods have arrived at the facility or have moved on to a customer site.

Login and post your comment!

Not a member?

Signup for an account now to access all of the features of RFIDJournal.com!

Case Studies Features Best Practices How-Tos
Live Events Virtual Events Webinars
Simply enter a question for our experts.
RFID Journal LIVE! RFID in Health Care LIVE! LatAm LIVE! Brasil LIVE! Europe RFID Connect Virtual Events RFID Journal Awards Webinars Presentations