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HighJump Makes the Leap to RFID
Supply chain applications provider HighJump adds RFID-enabling modules aimed at Wal-Mart suppliers and other companies.
Dec 02, 2003—Although RFID technology is advancing by leaps and bounds, it’s still only as good as the underlying software that drives factory and warehouse management and supply chain integration. Without efficient and effective systems, all the sophisticated tags and readers in the world aren’t going solve business problems.
It’s a concept that hasn’t escaped HighJump Software, an Eden Prairie, Minn., provider of supply chain execution (SCE) solutions. The company has added RFID-enabling modules for warehouse management, visibility and tracking, and manufacturing shop floor data collection. The modules include a wizard that helps companies quickly configure specific processes to utilize RFID, bar codes or both, depending on their specific requirements.
“There’s no question that RFID is going to revolutionize the supply chain,” states Chris Heim, CEO of HighJump Software. “Companies looking to adopt RFID and attain Department of Defense or Wal-Mart compliance are now grappling with a lot of issues. They can’t rip out all their existing systems and redo every business process within the supply chain. They need software that can help them achieve positive results.”
HighJump’s four RFID modules—Warehouse Management, Compliance Advantage, Tracking Advantage and Data Collection Advantage—focus on different market niches. Warehouse Advantage adds RFID compliance and workflow support to HighJump's base warehouse management solution. The product works with RFID, bar codes or both.
Compliance Advantage helps suppliers achieve Wal-Mart or DOD compliance by interfacing with shipping systems and ensuring that they print compliant labels. It is designed to accommodate evolving RFID standards and future mandates.
Tracking Advantage offers advanced tracking for returnable containers and other RFID-tagged high-value assets in closed-loop environments. It provides hands-free recognition of inbound and outbound containers but also ensures visibility of containers throughout the supply chain.
Data Collection Advantage puts RFID on the manufacturing shop floor. It allows a company to deploy RFID to track work in progress as well as finished goods. The feature is especially useful to manufacturers that track items in lots or by serial number.
A company can configure HighJump’s Advantage applications to interface with enterprise resource planning (ERP) and manufacturing resource planning (MRP) software or use it on a standalone basis. “The software allows companies to use RFID where it makes the most sense or is required by trading partners,” Heim says.
All the products run on Microsoft's platform (C, C++, SQL Server 2000 and Internet Information Services). HighJump will not divulge pricing for the applications. Its chief competitor in the SCE marketplace is Atlanta-based Manhattan Associates.
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