What is RFID?
RFID (Radio-frequency identification) is a technology that allows you to store and read data and information from RFID-tags from a distance. RFID is primarily used to store and send information in one direction. Near Field Communication (NFC) is communicated in 2 directions and can also process the received signals by itself. Other network technologies are LoRa and UwB.
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The latest trend within the RFID-industry is UHF EPC Class 1 Gen 2 tag ,abbreviated Gen 2, where gen stands for Generation. These tags provide better performances than the previous UHF-standards. This makes more and more possible with RFID. RFID-tags will never fully replace the bar code, since the costs will always be higher then printing a barcode. The costs for gen 2 tags are between 5 and 20 cents (depending on the amount). Additionally, a special hardware is needed to detect and read those UHF-tags.
What can you do with RFID in cleaning?
RFID allows small objects to communicate with each other. That is not the case, it is not a mesh network, it communicates with special readers / scanners. The objects contain a certain intelligence. What intelligence do they contain? The intelligence is in the software-platform, on which the info will be received. For example, RFID tags are placed in products and elements to track and trace them for, for example, inventory management, tracking of human behavior, time registration. In the cleaning they could be used in work clothes, mops, cleaning machines and personnel passes. In green and construction, we see that back in expensive machines, lawn mowers or tools and work clothes.
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RFID in Cleaning
At FacilityApps, we provided mops of a cleaning customer with RFID tags. This way we can follow the individual mops in the operational process, thus mapping the mops. This brings back the “mop loss” to nearly zero, which normally costs about € 500,000 a year in this implementation. The same process can be done with specialized work clothes and tools.
Generally, an RFID-system consists out of the next parts:
An data-processing system (middleware)
RFID platform and Apps
So, you always need a platform to get insight, but even then the step to implementation has not been made yet. Because in order for people in the field to be able to do something with it, you also need a mobile application to allow that communication to take place. Apps are the obvious option here to solve this problem. Options include Work order plans & Tasks Overview, Notifications, (Tasks / Planning / Action / Tickets / Communications, etc.)
FacilityApps has experience in this field as a Mobile Workforce Management specialist and thus also with he applications with RFID and UHF.
Keep on learning with FacilityApps
Discover more on technological developments and applications within the Cleaning industry by downloading one of our whitepapers, reports or surveys! Or check out our webinars on demand at our learning centre.