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RFID Saves Auto Parts Factory Money on Raw Materials

Thanks to improved production and inventory-management processes, Brazil's R2A has optimized its entire end-to-end supply chain.
By Edson Perin

Sérgio Gambim, iTag's CEO, says that through innovative practices, the RFID solution deployed at R2A has raised teams' operational requirements and improved business control. "RFID has made it possible to streamline, track and simplify the entire logistics process," Gambim says, "from factory production to the checking of truckloads, inventories, transfers, exchanges and sales." At the factory, SGTIN RFID tags are printed according to production order, and then the production order is finalized via the RFID portal. At the distribution center, orders are scanned via the RFID portal, providing improved revenue and truck boarding verification.

R2A adopted the standardization of GTIN per iTag's recommendation, so that the EAN13 numbers would stand out on invoices. "We took advantage of this need," Izídio says, "and we have already evolved the project to use RFID." The EPC Gen 2 standard is employed by the iTag iPrint middleware, which checks the quantity of production order items and triggers the Zebra printer to produce labels that comply with the GS1 standard. Because the system is compatible with most ERP systems, Gambim notes, deployment has become less complex.

ITag's RFID tags
"Our next step," Izídio states, "is to tailor the project to use the SSCC label for logistics control of the pallets we move between our branches. We will make the most of this opportunity to standardize and evolve with the information we can give our customers." Among the learning points, R2A says that during a forthcoming bulk-tagging effort, it plans to better divide sectors and individuals for tagging purposes. "We are already working toward correction and continuous improvement," he adds.

The next steps include updating the label layout by adding a Datamatrix with a GTIN number and an RFID serial number, in order to offer customers the ability to use labels in their logistics processes. "We are validating an integration between APIs," Izídio says, "enabling customers to order the products that were shipped on the truck by invoice number, and thus validate the products and the RFID codes being forwarded." R2A is also engaged in the commercialization of bumpers for automakers and other customers whose vehicles are foreign or equipped with imported parts.

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