How AssetPulse RFID IT Asset Tracking Solution helped reduce audit time and increase productivity

Year-end IT asset audits can cause major headaches for property or asset managers in IT organizations. IT equipment that is audited, span the spectrum – servers, desktops printers, copiers, projectors, network equipment, laptops, tablets and even smartphones. Both government and commercial organizations undergo the same tedious but essential process when it comes to trying to complete their year-end audits. We hear stories of asset managers crawling beneath desks and searching the dark corners of closets looking for misplaced IT equipment. These searches not only take up the asset managers’ time, but also the time of the equipment users themselves, thereby negatively impacting productivity across the entire organization. This is where RFID IT Asset Tracking solutions come in handy.

1. RFID IT Asset Tracking is Faster and Accurate

With our RFID IT Asset Tracking Solutions, one of our customers, Lawrence Berkeley Labs who are tracking their IT assets in addition to their lab equipment, were able to reduce their audit time from 3 months to 3 weeks! The time needed to do an audit using RFID is a tiny fraction of what it takes to audit using barcode readers. It takes less than 10% of the time needed for a barcode scan. The improvement in productivity is even more dramatic if the organization had been doing audits manually, with pen and paper.

RFID IT Asset Tracking

2. RFID allows more inventory audits due to its speed and efficiency

Most IT equipment, with the exception of mobile equipment like laptops and tablets, are expected to stay put for the most part. However, that is often not the case. Equipment might be removed because it isn’t working properly. It is quickly stashed in an already overcrowded closet – out of sight, out of mind. Someone retired or moved departments – their equipment could be swiftly repurposed for some other use within the department. All this happens without the knowledge of the uninformed asset or property manager. These are a few reasons why year-end audits tend to be such protracted nightmares.

Since RFID scanning is so efficient, asset managers are able to take periodic snapshots of their inventory all through the year, instead of just doing a single inventory survey at the year end. This allows them to be able to quickly detect a missing item earlier. Owners of the missing equipment tend to remember what happened to it, because of less elapsed time. Asset inventory is adjusted all through the year, with the asset locations updated during the periodic scans. So, when the year-end audit comes around, there are very few surprises with regards to missing equipment.

3. Reconcile Inventory Audit with one button click

Once the audits are done, reconciliation might also take an inordinate length of time. Figuring out the differences between your scanned list of assets and the list that your Finance folks (Finance list) have given you, can be tricky and cumbersome. Our AssetPulse RFID IT asset tracking solution allows reconciliation to be performed with one button click, much to the relief of our users! The reconciliation gives you the list of assets in the Finance list that were scanned and found. It also provides you with a list of assets in the Finance list that still need to be found and a list of assets that were found, but were not in the Finance list.

AssetPulse RFID IT asset tracking solutions help you to track IT assets rapidly and accurately. It helps you to track servers, desktops, laptops, networking and storage gear, tablets and smartphones located throughout the organization. The RFID IT asset tracking solution helps you to complete inventory audits in no time, track movement of assets in and out of the buildings, improve security and raise alerts, protect IP (intellectual property), locate IT assets easily and effortlessly, and efficiently manage insurance, warranty and replacement of IT assets. 

IT asset audit is a breeze with AssetPulse RFID IT asset tracking solution, helps to increase productivity and improve efficiency.

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RFID Inventory Tracking of Raw Material in a 2 Bin Kanban System

Many well reputed companies have deployed the 2 Bin Kanban system of inventory management in their manufacturing facilities. This simple system employs two bins to manage small but critical raw material inventory on the assembly line. Parts are supplied in this pull system through two rotating bins. The technician pulls parts from one bin till it is empty and then switches to the second bin. The empty first bin triggers an event that causes the bin to be replenished.

RFID Inventory Tracking of Raw material

Often, manual labor is used to look for empty bins on the line. A ‘runner’ periodically moves through the lines, picking up the empty bins and transporting them to the warehouse for replenishment. Some parts need replenishment more often than others. This can easily either cause delays and consequently, bottlenecks on the assembly line or require more manual labor, thereby increasing costs.

AssetPulse has worked with manufacturing organizations to proactively alert when an empty bin is generated. Communicating with ERP and other manufacturing systems, the Warehouse is able to decide when to deploy the ‘runner’ to pick up bins on specific lines, thereby optimizing the ‘pick up’ process. Additionally the speed at which the individual items are pulled will determine how many of the items are placed in the bins. This will help in identifying the number of items required to replenish the first bin, so that there is little risk of running low on stock which in turn could slow down production.

Benefits of RFID Inventory Tracking in Supply Chain Management

Choosing the right RFID tags for this use case is critical. Since the bins can be placed in close proximity of one another, it is very important that only the correct bins are read, and not other extraneous bins located close by. This issue of cross-reads can be a fundamental reason why the whole system can break down. Cross-reads can also be facilitated by choosing incorrect hardware – the RFID reader and/or RFID antenna. This is one main reason, why it is recommended that the Manufacturing Organization work with a single vendor to deploy such solutions, thereby optimizing all aspects of the solution – the RFID tags, the RFID reader hardware and the RFID software.

It is the software that facilitates proper handling of the bins. E.g., once the Warehouse replenishes the bins, our RFID Inventory Tracking Solutions can be used to ensure correct dispensing of bins, i.e. are the correct replenished bins placed at the correct locations? Working in close integration with ERP and Manufacturing Systems, AssetPulse RFID inventory tracking solutions communicate information about these bins back and forth, validating the correct placement of bins and alerting when exceptions occur.

The 2 Bin Kanban system of inventory management is typically used in industries that function in high volumes. Further, this system is suited for manufacturing lines where there is high overlap of parts across multiple product lines. The same RFID solutions can also be leveraged to expedite changeovers on the line. Changeover is the process of converting a manufacturing line from one product to another or from one work order to another. The tedious, but critical task of removing all bins from the ‘old’ line and deploying the bins required for the ‘new’ line, is time consuming and error prone.

Leveraging AssetPulse’s RFID solutions, organizations are able to complete this task quicker and with fewer errors. Our system has real-time information about the exact location of all the bins (when they are being tracked via RFID at the workstations). Due to continuous integration with ERP and Manufacturing systems, we are able to make decisions on which bins can remain in place, which bins need to be removed and what new bins need to be added to the line. Validation of the removal of old bins and placement of new bins is also done.

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