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Raise inventory accuracy in the retail sector with GS1 – Implement RFID with best practice guidance based on global learnings.
RFID provides the ability to identify, track and trace every single product with a serialised number. This not only improves inventory management and processes but also enhances visibility across the supply chain.
RFID refers to the use of radio waves to read and capture information stored on a tag attached to an object. An RFID solution is principally made up of four components:
Electronic Product Code (EPC) enabled RFID is the global standard maintained by GS1 for RFID technology. Created in collaboration with RFID technology providers, suppliers and retail users, the EPC standard defines three key elements of the technology:
How data is to be stored on the tag
The data structure for tags is a simple extension of the widely used GS1 system of product identifiers. EPC RFD codes consist of each product's Global Trade Item Number (GTIN) - these are sometimes called UPC or EANs - with the addition of a serial number for each product instance and some instructions for the reader.
How a tag talks to the reader
The EPC standard provides a blueprint for how tags and readers talk to each other - this means that as long as both are EPC compliant, any combination of tags and readers will work together. In order to do this, the industry has reduced the variability of tags and readers, uniting in the use of passive, Ultra High Frequency (UHF) tags. In Australia the standard is 918-926 MHz frequency range.
How readers talk to business systems
The final part of the EPC standard - how the reader links the data that it captures back into your systems - ultimately ensures the interoperability of your RFID solution. This enables the efficient and automated communication of data across your network of departments, suppliers and partners.
"The effect of RFID will be felt right through our supply chain, enabling us to automate our facilities up stream. The technology maximises the benefits of automation. It will allow us to consolidate and fulfil orders, from across channels and sources, serving the customer more efficiently. Ultimately this affects the authenticity of our brand." - Terry Murphy, Director National Distribution Centre, John Lewis
Like a copy of the GS1 Australia Apparel RFID Implementation Guidelines?