Are Retail and Healthcare Driving the Global Market for RFID?

RFID technology is well-suited for many operations in all types of industries and now with several innovations and advances happening in the RFID technology, organizations are leveraging its power for streamlining their business processes. Retail and Healthcare sectors have been the earliest adopters of RFID technology. In fact, the retail industry has been at the forefront of RFID revolution that has taken place in recent years. Several leading retailers have mandated the use of RFID solutions into their supply chain operations. Healthcare is also not far behind in utilizing the power of RFID for streamlining operations, driving out costs, and enhancing patient care experience. It can be safely said that these two sectors are driving the global RFID market. 

How the Retail Sector is Driving RFID Market

The retail industry is the highest adopter of RFID technology. Actually, in recent years, RFID technology has reformed the retail industry, creating competitive, efficient, and reliable business practices and business systems. RFID has become the preferred choice of retailers for supply chain management, inventory management, and asset management. Companies like WalMart and other leading retailers use RFID systems throughout their entire supply chain. The implementation of RFID technology in supply chain facilitates improved fulfilment accuracy, precise docking, and faster, more accurate shipments, and increases the efficiency and reliability of the entire chain. RFID has a huge role to play in asset tracking and management for retailers. Marks & Spencer is looking to adopt RFID asset tracking for equipment like roll cages and display racks. Inventory tracking with RFID has made life easier for the retailers. Specifically, RFID-based inventory tracking has spurred apparel retailers and in turn, demands made by apparel retailers for newer RFID solutions has spurred more and more innovations in the RFID technology. These retailers tag every item of clothing with RFID tags which enable a store’s staff to identify all items of clothing on the shop’s shelves and racks and keep track of the inventory. According to a study, 73% of retailers and brands are either in the process of implementing or piloting RFID technology. Retail giant Macy’s has implemented RFID technology in all its stores in 2017 by tagging 100 percent of all items. It is already seeing financial and operating benefits that can be gained from RFID. Cosmetics, electronics, sports goods, jewellery, grocery retailers are also utilizing RFID technology in one way or the other to increase efficiency and set themselves apart from the competition. But all these are more conventional uses of the RFID technology. Retailers are now using RFID for some unique and innovative business strategies. RFID technology is helping to create a more personalized experience for shoppers. RFID can help retailers to impress customers by greeting them by name, remembering their shopping preferences, offering them a wider selection of merchandise, and providing them faster assistance. Advances in RFID technology have also envisioned possibilities of checkout-free shopping experience. In fact, Amazon has launched its checkout-free grocery store Amazon Go where you just need to tap your phone on a detector when you walk in and then walk out with your food; there is no need to stand in long checkout queues.

Healthcare’s Push to the RFID Market

Healthcare is among the earliest adopters of RFID globally. The healthcare industry has to adhere to government regulations while still caring for individual patients and giving the best care possible. The benefit of implementing RFID in hospitals is immense as it allows hospitals to focus on treating patients well and saving lives in a cost-effective manner. RFID can be used in the healthcare industry for purposes such as tracking hospital personnel and patients, equipment, and supplies, checking for counterfeit products, preventing errors in healthcare administration, and for maintenance of shared yet secured medical records. RFID is highly beneficial for personnel and patient tracking in healthcare environment. RFID is commonly used on patients so that they do not wander off and for accurate identification for facility access control and security. It also helps doctors and nurses to ensure that patients are administered right medicines at the right time. Moreover, attendants, nurses, and doctors can also be tracked with RFID, so that they can be made available immediately during any emergencies. Hospitals can also track operating instruments and medical equipment to ensure that all materials are accounted for with the help of RFID. RFID also allows to track and manage documents and files of patients better, thus, ensuring effective treatment. Hospitals also can use RFID to track medication dispensing, tissue and fluid samples, and blood bags. Several hospitals all over the world have embraced RFID. It is helping them to improve their service, minimize medical errors, improve diagnostic capabilities, improve productivity and achieve their ultimate goal of enhancing patient outcomes. The revolutionary RFID technology has the potential to create value and develop efficiency across almost every segment of business. In the near future, one can expect RFID to bring more positive changes in the retail and healthcare space and drive these two sectors forward.]]>

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