Tool Tracking with RFID
BCDS have been helping companies to manage tools, including preventative maintenance, of all sizes, shapes, and materials for over 35 years.
RFID tool tracking can be used to accurately manage and locate all RFID tagged tools within a certain room or location. We have implemented solutions in many industries including healthcare, manufacturing, mining, construction, and retail. From the smallest surgical tools to large heavy-duty equipment.
What type of information can be provided?
– Tool usage history
– Tool usage frequency
– Last date of maintenance
– Who is using the too?
– List of all personnel who have used the tool
– Last tool removed
– Last tool replaced
How do you use this information?
– Replace Tools before they break
– Schedule Maintenance
– Find lost tools
– Ensure that the right tools are in kits to avoid lost time on site
– Determine if more tools are needed
– Know when a tool was last seen
– Improve processes by identifying pain points in the tool management process
Types of RFID Tool Tracking Systems
Fixed RFID systems can include RFID readers, gateways, or portals. They can be set up to monitor:
– An area, building, room or even a vehicle such as a van or trailer
– In cabinets, toolboxes or in a custom vending machine
– On shelves or display areas
They can be configured to monitor an area continuously, upon the activation of a sensor – such as a door opening or at regular set intervals. These systems can also be paired with access control systems to limit who can and cannot access the tools
BCDS Solutions has developed a robust RFID solution for the use of tracking tools from a Store’s area being issued to an employee, contractor, technician, tradesman etc. The tool assets attributes are stored in the AsTrack cloud, which is configurable to suit many industry types for naming conventions and descriptions. The database generates reports when the tools left the area, by which employee, and for what job they have been allocated to. Upon return the system scans the tools back into inventory. Any missing tools are then highlighted where action can then be taken. Creating a simple and cost-effective solution for tool tracking.
Fixed RFID systems are often preferred as they generally provide more consistent data as they are not reliant on personnel to take inventory and scan it. They can also be configured to allow for automatic triggers such as doors opening and closing.
AsTrack: Your secure and easy-to-use asset tracking software
Track and trace your assets within an office, warehouse, on site or in a retail environment with our industry established asset tracking software. Web-based and leveraging the latest mobile network technologies, AsTrack streamlines your business functions by automating asset management processes. With a choice of technologies that may be implemented, BCDS can provide you with a complete automated barcode or RFID tracking and management solution for your business.
– Manage every aspect of your asset’s life cycle, from acquisition through disposal.
– Improve Asset Performance – Track and manage asset availability and apply maintenance strategies according to an asset’s ‘criticality’ and increase Return on Assets across the entire asset life cycle.
– Cost control – Balance maintenance costs against replacement costs, reduce unplanned downtime and identify warranty opportunities and minimise maintenance overtime.
– Manage Preventative Maintenance – AsTrack can generate planned maintenance work orders for individual assets or asset rounds.
– Accurate Audit and Reporting Tool – Changes to selected database tables can be tracked.
RFID Handheld readers rely on the user to scan the tool inventory in and out of locations. This can mean flexibility to take inventory when suits the company. These systems also allow for the user to find an individual tool using inbuilt Tag Finding features. These systems are also usually much more cost effective and have the flexibility or being portable for movement in and out of different sites and areas.
RFID Tool Tracking can create a Positive ROI
This is mainly done by saving the business money on not having to constantly replace lost, broken, and stolen tools, and through the increased productivity from ensuring that technicians on site have the right tools available. The additional data on preventative maintenance, usage and history for each tool also allows for better purchasing decisions to further save the business time and money.
BCDS have the experience and know how to overcome even the trickiest environmental obstacles from small surfaces such as on surgical tools, mitigation techniques for negative interference of metal surfaces on UHF RFID frequency, working out the best methods of attachment and even combating high and low temperature environments.