Inventory Visibility

When ITCS smart antennas are strategically located throughout a distribution center, it is possible to achieve real-time, perpetual inventory visibility of goods in your facility.

 

Here are some of the inventory monitoring applications to which ITCS®is suited. We have chosen to reference applications in a retail environment, but the system can equally well be applied in other areas where similar business processes concerning inventory management are implemented. 

Retail store:

  • Back of store, including receiving, back-stock on racks or free-standing on the floor, replenishment doors, etc.
  • Replenishment operations, with inventory tagged at the carton / case or item level, or non-tagged items that are carried to the sales floor in tagged returnable plastic tote bins which have been packed and shipped from a DC.
  • Sales floor, perhaps monitoring categories such as apparel or electronics (including DVDs and CDs).
  • Tracking items to selected points of interest around a sales floor: replenishment; display shelves; point of sale; exit.
  • Promotions compliance, tracking the location of point-of-purchase display modules (display components and display ready inventory) in both back of store and on the retail sales floor.
  • DSD monitoring, tracking the arrival and proper placement of tagged inventory that is delivered direct to the sales floor by a supplier.
  • Tracking capital equipment (e.g. clothing carousels, material movement equipment, cash boxes, returnable containers such as those used to carry fresh produce).

Open Box 

  • Cash and carry warehouse; identifying and locating pallets and cartons / cases of goods on the sales floor and in high-bay racking.

Distribution center:

  • Goods receiving; monitoring multiple dock doors for pallets and cartons received.
  • Goods receiving; scanning tagged items in a carton/case, as an inspection step prior to loading onto a carousel sorter for placing into inventory.
  • Parallel loading of pallets for two stores from a common conveyor spur.
  • Goods dispatch; monitoring multiple dock doors for pallets and cartons/cases being loaded onto trucks.
  • Locating a carton/case in a high bay rack. 

For efficient replenishment operations in a retail store, there is a need to quickly locate a particular carton/case of an item specified in a pick list provided to a store associate for action. ITCS continuously monitors tagged cartons/cases in the stock room so that the present location of tagged cartons/cases may be known, in 3D, without having to go searching for specified goods using a hand-held reader in an attempt to find a particular carton/case. This provides real-time visibility of goods, leading to accurate perpetual inventory figures, which are foundational to making good replenishment decisions. Moreover, because ITCS monitors inventorymovement in real-time, automatically, business rules can be applied to raise alerts on receipt of priority items, or inappropriate movement of tagged goods, or excessive dwell time (e.g. a tagged case has spent too long back of store). 

ITCS can tackle the problems of real-time inventory monitoring in a way which portal and hand-held solutions simply can not, because ITCS achieves truly zonal monitoring in 3D and does not rely on the movement of goods through a portal or to be approached and scanned manually in order to achieve reliable identification and to ascertain where the goods are located.