When leading Dutch video equipment rental company Rent-All provided the tools needed for entertainment production, it traditionally employed a manual system to register goods from metal trusses, to lighting and audio equipment as they were sent to, or returned from, its customers. Close management of its high-value times was essential, but the manual process of registering the items was time consuming and could introduce errors. Additionally, when goods were picked to fulfill customer orders, locating each piece of equipment created another challenge.
So the company deployed an RFID system from Aucxis RFID Solutions to bring visibility to its assets, and leveraged RAIN RFID tags from Confidex that are optimized for both flexibility and durability. Choosing the right tags for the job was a challenge. Rent-All’s fast-paced environment demanded technology that could accomplish bulk reading of goods at a distance, while on the move. And the tags also needed to be operable whether attached to trusses, speakers or mixing consoles; while being applied discretely to be invisible on materials used on stage. That means the tags would have to be strategically mounted on each unique type of equipment.
Aucxis worked with various hard and soft label tags before determining the best option: Confidex’s Ironside Slim long-range, on-metal tag. The form factor of Ironside Slim makes it an optimal tag for different shape and size of assets while still providing excellent performance for reliable inventory.
- Manual registration of incoming and outgoing rental materials was a time-consuming and error-prone process.
- Finding material to fulfil orders sometimes required searchers in the warehouse as the location was unknown.
- Automatic inventory of items during loading and unloading saves labour for more meaningful tasks.
- Increased shipping accuracy reduces the need for secondary deliveries.
- A real-time overview of the lifespan of each article includes a number of movements, turnaround times, maintenance and failures.
Rent-All conducted a proof of concept and pilot before deploying the system companywide. The company’s warehouse management software leverages the Aucxis RFID-based solution including its HERTZ middleware, to understand where palletized goods are located within its automated site in company headquarters in Bemmel, Netherlands as well as its other sites throughout Europe.
To fulfill orders, the loading process at the docks moves rapidly. When materials with RFID tags are loaded or unloaded, they pass through an RFID gate. These gates come with integrated Impinj R420 readers and antennas that capture the unique ID on each Confidex tag and Aucxis’ HERTZ middleware integrates with Rent-All’s ERP system to provide insight into each point of data capture. With the solution, Rent-All can improve the speed in which items are loaded and unloaded thanks to automatically detecting each unique ID. It has reduced errors and therefore the need for secondary deliveries. And a real-time overview of the lifespan of each article enables the company to better manage maintenance and predict failures thereby preventing those failures.
The Confidex Ironside Family is providing reliable RFID data capture when applied to materials from metal to plastic and on a wide variety of form factors, even in challenging environments. In fact, Rent-All has applied the tags to more than 260,000 rental items to support its automatic detection system. With the RAIN RFID tags on its goods, and Aucxis’ readers and software to capture and manage each asset’s movements, the company has a full view into the location and status of its fleet of assets. And that ensures Rent-All can manage equipment as it passes through the supply chain: to theaters, television studios, fairs and festivals across Europe. Confidex’s Ironside™ product family is optimized for high value assets, returnable transit items (RTIs) as well as metallic industrial assets. The patented antenna design, with industry-leading performance and robust IP68 structure, ensures smooth asset tracking in any environment.