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RedPrairie Adds RFID Features to WMS

The latest version of DLx Warehouse aims to make RFID a more integral part of supply-chain and distribution operations.
By Beth Bacheldor
Jul 03, 2006RedPrairie has unveiled a new version of its warehouse management software with the aim of helping companies make RFID more integral within their supply-chain and distribution operations.

RedPrairie's DLx Warehouse product now includes native RFID support programmed into the application's logic, so companies can use RFID tags and associated data, such as unique product codes, as part of their picking and packing processes, warehouse workflows and order and inventory processes. Companies can also use the DLx Warehouse software to communicate directly with RFID printer-encoders and thus print, encode and test EPC RFID tags. New reporting features let companies query the system to track RFID read rates and other metrics.

RedPrairie will continue to offer an add-on RFID module that interfaces with its WMS. But the firm is now integrating RFID fully into its WMS. "Warehouse DLx software will now feature RFID truly integrated into the warehouse management system's workflows," says Tom Kozenski, warehouse management product marketing leader for RedPrairie. "This is a logical progression as RFID continues to mature and increase market acceptance."

Kozenski says the integration will improve warehouse operations in a number of ways. It will integrate RFID tagging operations within a facility's existing workflows. "It will improve worker productivity by eliminating the need for line-of-sight scanning of bar codes in certain operations," he says. "And it will improve order and inventory accuracy by utilizing RFID's persistent reading capabilities."

Available now, the new release includes several other features, such as multi-warehouse support that lets companies run the warehouse management system on one or many servers, in a centralized or decentralized deployment. RedPrairie added support for IBM's DB2 Universal Database, for companies that use DB2 as the underlying database supporting the WMS.

"It is RedPrairie's intent to support all viable and popular technologies across the IT community," says Kozenski. "The DB2 database clearly fits into that strategy."

Other enhancements include an updated graphical user interface that features navigation clues designed to make it easier for end users to find the information they require and move from one part of the application to another. RedPrairie has also added a "zero administration" client—a new graphical user interface that runs on Windows-based PCs. It can be automatically distributed and updated across the network, eliminating the need for IT personnel to physically administer the client systems.

DLx Warehouse is built on a Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) designed to let companies leverage a standard, Web-based technology platform. Customers include Cingular Wireless, Cummins, Exel, General Electric, JC Penney, Sony Electronics and others, according to RedPrairie.
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