I was very happy to recently read the report 2016 RFID: Has Its Time Finally Come for Retail? published by Fung Global Retail and Technology and written by its very insightful Managing Director, Deborah Weinswig. As she points out – RFID is a 70-year old technology that many retailers previously avoided due to concerns about costs and other factors. That is now rapidly changing and the global RFID market—for tags, interrogators, systems, services, networking and software—is estimated to hit approximately $13.9 billion this year and to grow at a 17.0% CAGR through 2018, according to IDTechEx. Deborah goes on to further explain that such trends such as accelerated shipping and Omni-Channel operations are finally encouraging retailers to overcome their concerns about RFID and we have seen a significant amount of RFID activity in the retail industry over the past 5 years. The RFID reached its inflection point in 2010 and within all technologies (LF with livestock regulation, HF with NFC and secured payment and HF with Retail compliancy launched). The cumulative number of tags shipped since 1943 will be around 55 Billion according to Rain and since 2014, 50% of that volume have been shipped. RFID can now help retailers locate inventory, and management consultancy Kurt Salmon estimates that finding inventory in time can boost a retailer’s sales by 3%–5%. It can also help retailers limit out-of-stock situations, reducing the likelihood of an item being out of stock by 60%–80%, according to ABI Research. RFID can facilitate the pooling of inventory between stores and distribution centers, too, which allows retailers to ship online orders more quickly. CXignited’s vision and our expanded solution set is based on RFID becoming the enabling technology for the Internet of Things IoT, which bodes well for the technology, as an estimated 50 billion devices will be connected by 2020. Combine RFID with Beacons and IOT and retailers can now digitize the entire enterprise, from product development, through the Unified Commerce and right to the shop floor. Retailers that move quickly and adopt strategies to digitize the shop floor as well as deploy the right RFID infrastructure will be able to offer best in class customer experiences and new engagements that have not been possible before. The opportunities are endless to deliver not only an optimized supply chain but optimized store operations that can reduce time and errors and enhance the customer experience. Today RFID enables real-time data streaming and intelligence, localization and communications to empower merchandising actions, personalization and proximity marketing with enhanced technology. RFID has been redefined and there is much more to come!
Light up product, people and brand passion – Alain Fanet, CEO of CXignited