Abstract: Previously organizations had problems with inaccurate inventory control system. This research aims to investigate RFID techniques to solve inventory control problems. The Securitization of literature review related to importance of RFID in inventory control, highlights basic principle of RFID technology and emphasis on improvement of inventory control management.
RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) is “the next emerging technology”. RFID is used to locate misplace entity through tags and readers, tags that transmit the information using radio waves and reader used to collect the information. Tagged inventory becomes mobile and communicating entity to the whole organization, that entity is processed to send information to system server through radio waves, here the objective of the system is to identify, monitor, authenticate and alert by using information sharing form tagged item to server (basically called Just in Time System).
Previously, organization used to spend in barcode systems, in which tagged items have to come in direct physical contact with the reader. RFID brings up new advantages in SCM that were missing in barcode systems. RFID is the recent development in automatic identification and data capture (AIDC) that enables organizations to remotely access the information of the tagged entity.
Inventory Control 库存控制
It is almost impossible to find an organization that does not use, transform, distribute or sell materials in one form or another. Inventory control is relevant to all organizations from any sector of the economy. Inventory control dates back to the dawn of time where the earliest humans used to stockpile food and stone tools. Presently inventory control is an essential part of organizations that is correlated to corporate success and failure. Inventory is defined as material held by an organization awaiting sale, use or transformation. Organizations hold inventory for a range of reasons including a lack of predictability or fluctuations in demand, unreliability in supply, to receive quantity discounts, to lower ordering costs, and to be subject to price protection through buying products at the right time. Purchasing holding and possessing inventory subject an organization to operational costs. According to Muller the cost of holding inventory refers to financial, space, labor, deterioration, damage and theft aspects. Inventory control techniques can be employed by organizations in order to minimize the burden of ongoing expenses. Inventory control can be defined as “the activity that organizes the availability of items to the customers by, coordinating the purchasing and manufacturing and distribution functions to meet marketing needs”.
The aim of inventory control is to maximize customer service, profit and efficiency of purchasing and production, whilst at the same time minimizing inventory investment. Not all organizations have the same inventory requirements. Organization that are classified as being retails, wholesale/ distribution and manufacturing have differing needs and inventory issues.
RFID Technology 无线射频识别技术
RFID Basic RFID基础
Radio frequency identification technology which uses radio frequency waves, with the help of wave’s data is transferred from reader to movable item. The purpose of RFID is to tracking, identifying, categorizing and monitoring the products. This system includes tags, readers, antennas and software. Tags are placed on products, Communication is done through antennas, and readers can read and write and carry the data to the software. Software manages the RFID system.
There are three main features of RFID applications. RFID应用有三个主要特征
Identification of the product 产品标识
Identification of the product location 产品位置标识
Provides the information of product on just-in-time 及时提供产品信息
Advantages of RFID RFID的优势
The characteristics of RFID technology described previously differentiate them from other automatic identification technologies. One of the main physical advantages of RFID technology is that tags, unlike barcodes do not require line of sight to be read and multiple tags can be read simultaneously.
RFID systems are unaffected by dust, moisture, oils, coolants, cuttings, gases. In addition to this RFID tags can operate in extreme temperatures and last for longer periods, in some cases longer than the items they are attached to. RFID tags and systems are also characterized by having a greater data density and data quantity than traditional automatic identification technologies in the form of barcodes. This allows RFID tags to carry unique serial numbers more easily than a barcode, which would require a long symbol or a two-dimensional variant, which is difficult to scan and fit into available space. A final major advantage of RFID systems is that they capture data in real time. Capturing data in real time allows organizations to improve data quality, as the information captured is more timely and accurate.
Challenges of RFID RFID的挑战
Studies and literature reveal that due to RFID’s novelty in commercial and manufacturing applications, a number of challenges have created concerns about the feasibility of its implementation. The majority of problems that have been encountered when implementing RFID relate to technical and hardware issues. Issues have been raised such as the reliability of RFID tag reads. It has been discovered that when a tag is oriented perpendicular to a reader it is difficult to read it. Radio waves can be hidden, distorted or reflected by metal and the noise from electric motors and that fluorescent lights can also interfere with RFID communications.
One of the simulations revealed that items with overlapping RFID tags wrapped around them could not be detected by the reader when they passed through the entry/exit. It was also found that concealing items had an effect on whether they would read or not with a single concealed product being identified, as compared to the three tagged items which were identified when passing through the entry/exit in plain sight. Moreover, RFID experienced poor to average read rates when implemented for loss prevention. It is perceived that if RFID was applied in the small-to-medium retailer for loss prevention purposes, theft may be reduced but the reliability of the technology could not be guaranteed, unless orientation issues were resolved and the read rates improved.
The final challenge of RFID relates to privacy concerns. As RFID is used to track items, privacy activists are concerned about the use of technology on retails items such as clothes which could allow retailers to send and receive information after items have been purchased.
Literature Review on RFID Technology RFID技术综述
In literature review we are following secondary data such as some published researched paper from various conferences and journals.
“RFID-enabled inventory control optimization: a proof of concept in a small-to-medium retailer.” this conference paper was originally published as Dane H., Michael K. and Wamba S. F., in 43 Hawaii International Conferences on System Sciences (HICSS), Organizational Systems and Technology, Implementation and Usage of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), 2010. From this research paper we will review the impact of RFID technology on the inventory control on an organization by using proof of concept (PoC) approach and lost prevention mechanism.
“RFID支持的库存控制优化：中小型零售商的概念验证”。该会议论文最初由Dane H.，Michael K.和Wamba S.F.在2010年举行的43届夏威夷国际系统科学会议（HICSS），组织系统和技术，射频识别（RFID）的实施和使用上发表。从这篇研究论文中，我们将通过使用概念验证（PoC）方法和丢失预防机制，回顾RFID技术对组织库存控制的影响。
“RFID Technology: A Review of its Applications” this paper is published by Arun N. Nambiar, and published in the journal the World Congress on Engineering and Computer Science, 2009. From this research paper we will review about RFID, framework, organizational challenges and their applications. This paper will help us in improving RFID technology in inventory system.
“Improving Inventory Control in a small-to-medium Retailer Using RFID,” was published by Hamilton D., in International Symposium on Communications and Information Technologies, 2007. From this research we will know what the issues with inventory control system are.
“B-to-B e-Commerce: Assessing the Impacts of RFID Technology in a Five Layer Supply Chain,” was researched by Ygal Bendavid, Elisabeth Lefebvre, Louis A. Lefebvre, Samuel Fosso Wamba, and published in 40th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences, 2007. From this research paper we will be finding outs some performance improvements of RFID in supply chain management.
“Understanding the Impact of Emerging Technologies on Process Optimization: The Case of RFID Technology;” is researched by Fosso Wamba S. and Bendavid Y., in 13th Asian-Pacific Decision Sciences Conference, 2008. From this research paper we will review the attempts to improve the understanding of the impact of RFID technology on inventory control system.
“B-to-B电子商务：评估RFID技术在五层供应链中的影响”，由Ygal Bendavid、Elisabeth Lefebvre、Louis a.Lefebvvre、Samuel Fosso Wamba研究，并发表在2007年第40届夏威夷国际系统科学会议上。从这篇研究论文中，我们将发现RFID在供应链管理中的一些性能改进。
“了解新兴技术对流程优化的影响：以RFID技术为例”Fosso Wamba S.和Bendavid Y.在2008年第13届亚太决策科学会议上进行了研究。从这篇研究论文中，我们将回顾提高对RFID技术对库存控制系统影响的理解的尝试。
“New Understanding of RFID Adoption and Infusion in Retail Supply Chain” researched by Xiaoran Wu and Chandrasekar Subramaniam. It is Hawaii International Conference paper and was presented in 2009. It Uses the Technology-Organization-Environment (TOE) framework to develop a theoretical model for RFID adoption and infusion.
Research Methodology 研究方法
The research study documented in this paper involves examining of inventory enabled with RFID, its impact and investigation of contemporary events gathered from inventory enabled SCM, Small-to-Medium Retailer, Distribution Chain and Consumer goods supply chain. Using deductive method to address RFID impact and scrutinize identified techniques used for RFID (Proof of Concept, Traceability in Process, Business Integration Model and Quantitative Model). Draw conclusion based on techniques studied and improve technique to address problems in above mentioned techniques.
Research Design 研究设计
As the main objective of the overall study is to determine the technique of RFID in inventory system, the research design corresponds to an exploratory research initiative. A research was conducted in four distinctive phases, over a period of three months.
Phase 1: Make concepts by reviewing past researches:第1阶段：通过回顾过去的研究来制定概念：
“RFID-enabled Inventory Control Optimization: A Proof of Concept in a Small-to-Medium Retailer”( Hamilton Dane, Katina Michael, Samuel Fosso Wamba) “支持RFID的库存控制优化：中小型零售商的概念证明”
“Using RFID to improve traceability in process industry Experiments in a distribution chain for iron ore pellets”( Bjorn Kvarnstrom, Erik Vanhatalo) “使用RFID提高铁矿球团分销链中流程工业实验的可追溯性”
“Business Integration Model with Due-date Re-negotiations”(Mokmin Park, Dongmyung Lee, Kitae Shin) “具有到期日重新谈判的业务整合模式”
research project. 这是一个研究项目
Using RFID to Improve Traceability 使用RFID提高可追溯性
This technique focuses on tracking the iron ore pallets using RFID, by conducting experiments it was found that RFID tracking fails when place in Heat exposure and when track the product in distributed system. When RFID is placed in container the safety from damage is achieved, container was made from 75 percent dolomite and 25 percent polyester. When special container is used, the highest signal strength is achieved . But how much signal strength is achieved, it is question that is left open. Considering proof of concept approach in loss prevention simulation, when RFID enabled product was canceled, system did not detect the product. In this case to achieve the highest signal strength penetrable carrier (Ultra violet) can be used.