RFID or radiofrequency recognition (RFID) technology has been suggested as a more sophisticated alternative to barcodes that could be utilized to enhance “product tracking and building access control the tracking of baggage on flights,” supply chain management as well as other aspects of many activities (Zhu Mukhopadhyay & Kurata 2012, page. 160). The advantage of RFID is multiple because it can be equipped to read multiple tags at once and doesn’t require for them to be in the lines of sight. Also, the scan area is larger and the storage capacity for data is greater and security is greater (barcodes can be duplicated more easily as RFID tags).
In addition, RFID tags are more robust, which is crucial since damaged barcodes can’t be read. Furthermore, the real-time transparency that RFID technology provides means that there is no shrinkage as well as the counts and ordering of the units is automated, and are caused by a certain level of inventory. Apart the fact that RFID offers updates on date of expiration (Cakici, Groenevelt, & Seidmann (2011)).
RFID technology is used successfully in the food and restaurants and healthcare, logistics as well as travel and tourism and even in the military (Zhu and co. 2012). It is likely to be interesting that the many benefits of RFID are of particular importance to various sectors, and in some instances, it can be viewed as too sophisticated (for instance, for small businesses). Yet, the potential for efficient and timely control of inventory seems to be of interest to all sectors.
The advantage over RFID over barcodes is that it lowers the cost of labor in the process (since they require manual count and do not refresh on expiration dates of the items) and also ensures there’s no shortage of the essential equipment at any given time (Cakici and co. 2011, 845, p. 845). Additionally, while this option is appealing to all industries but it is of particular importance to those in the field of emergency situations, for instance, healthcare.
Roper, Sedehi, and Ashuri (2015) have done an analysis of RFID which is used in hospitals to ensure the tracking of assets (in this instance portable medical equipment). Although RFID proved useful for various motives (in particularly, it was able to determine under-used units and help manage assets more efficiently) and the ability to manage assets in real-time of updates, as well as the “confidence the equipment will be available at any time” were stressed in the study by its authors (Roper and Sedehi. 2015, 383 p. 383). The efficiency of operations is of crucial importance for healthcare facilities that constantly faces shortage of time, labor and money.
RFID live asset monitoring makes sure that the resources (time and cost of labor) for the management of inventory are minimized, and human errors are completely eliminated (Roper and al. 2015, 368 p. 368). Continuous monitoring and automatic quantification of inventory allows employees to ensure that the inventory needed is always accessible and is particularly important in an industry where crises occur frequently. matter and tends to decrease stress (Roper and al. 2015, 368 p. 383).
In the end, because of the efficient RFID real-time inventory tracking, health care quality improves as per the study of Roper and co. (2015) the technology led to a decrease in wait times for patients, a boost in productivity of the staff, and improved quality of healthcare (p. 383-384). The other benefits of RFID have also resulted in efficiency and cost reduction of facility management. This is why the advantages RFID can offer over barcodes make it an ideal technology to be used in hospital settings.