Category: Case Study


Application Case Study: Tracking Reusable Carts

By Katrina.Smiley@cdotech.com,

CLIENT PROFILE AND ISSUE

A large manufacturer of commercial and residential building products contacted CDO Technologies requesting help tracking their critical assets, typically reusable carts, when shipping to their customers and between their two manufacturing facilities. The manufacturer’s fast-paced facilities create an issue where carts often become lost and forgotten, causing a shortage of carts between the two facilities. This is costly for the manufacturer and requires them to purchase hundreds of new replacement carts each year.

DISCOVERY PROCESS

To address the client’s issues, the CDO team sought to understand the pacing, environment, and workflow at the client’s facilities, as well as the assets’ point of entry and exit from each building. CDO identified the client’s “Black Hole” locations, which are any location where carts disappear or are forgotten.

SOLUTION

CDO recommended implementing the Critical Asset Tracking Solution (CATS) software and installing multiple automatic Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) scan portals in critical areas at both facilities’ shipping and receiving docks. CDO’s solution also involved placing RFID portals in “Back Hole” locations to track if an asset enters an area with a high risk for loss. The implementation of the CDO CATS software allows workers at both facilities to identify the last known location of a cart and its movement between facilities. Additionally, CATS software communicates to the client’s Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system to identify if a customer’s cart was shipped.

RESULTS

The CDO solution provides greater visibility to assets in both storage and “Black Hole” locations, dramatically reducing search time for carts. The added visibility of carts at customer sites improves their return rate. Tracking assets between both facilities enables each facility to have a more balanced allocation of carts. Better visibility, tracking and allocation leads to reduced purchases of replacement carts and cost savings.

Production workflow is significantly enhanced. Delays caused by searching for carts or waiting to transfer carts from storage, to production, and finally, to shipping is reduced.

If you have questions or would like to further discuss your unique asset tracking challenges, please email or call Todd Muckerheide.

Email: todd.muckerheide@cdotech.com
Phone: 937-476-2224

Case Study: Optimizing Smart Manufacturing

By Katrina.Smiley@cdotech.com,

CLIENT PROFILE AND ISSUE

A global manufacturing leader with increasing demand for their products wanted to streamline their processes, increase traceability, and ensure accurate and on-time product delivery. Under their former method of Labor Reporting, when the product was moving through each assembly station an employee had to stop what they were doing and report the quantity in a computer. With manual reporting, this took around 10 minutes per product, per assembly line, and was possible to report the product in a wrong operation or incorrect job, report an operation twice, or skip reporting an operation completely. These issues impacted the inventory quantities and transactions, leading to shortages and inaccurate inventory levels reported.

DISCOVERY PROCESS

The global leader decided to adopt Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) into its work-in process procedures. They reached out to Metalcraft, an industry leader in RFID tag manufacturing, who helped guide them in selecting the proper tag for their processes. Metalcraft ensured the tag construction and RFID components would work in their environment and deliver all necessary information. CDO Technologies maintains an excellent reputation with Metalcraft and was first on their short-list of companies that could help the company reach their goals. CDO worked with the global leader to install, implement, and integrate our Critical Asset Tracking System (CATS) with the already-existing system.

SOLUTION

CDO designed the workflow process, helped the global leader develop the Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system integration, and validated the transactions. They simulated the workflow by moving an RFID tag in front of the readers and performing the integration and labor reporting for normal transactions. Once tested and validated, the team was ready to implement the solution in an assembly line, while monitoring the processes closely to detect errors. CDO worked with them to smooth over any kinks in the system, ensuring the new custom system ran at the highest efficiency. After one month of testing in production, the team deployed the solution to all assembly lines.

RESULTS

By using the RFID tags and the CATS solution, the global leader improved inventory transaction accuracy by auto-filling the materials used on each piece, eliminating human error from the invoicing process. They also saved 10 minutes of manual worktime per product, translating into eight to nine work hours saved daily.

The source of many issues the global leader had previously experienced was in forgetting to report the labor at a station, which was generating “Late Operations.” Late Operations is a Key Performance Indicator which corrects labor time reporting on a task. The global leader had previously needed to track Late Operations daily to ascertain their reports matched the work completed. Implementation of the RFID system eliminated the need for Late Operations by auto-filling parts and labor for the tasks at each station.  

RFID implementation with the CDO Critical Asset Tracking System also helped the global leader eliminate another KPI they previously encountered, “Shortages.” Shortages resulted from a failure to accurately report the operations. Specifically, a labor reporting error meant the system was not depleting the inventory for the components physically used in the workflow, hence creating a false positive and not triggering accurate replenishment actions. As Shortages were discovered, rushed orders for inventory increased along with other unnecessary complications. Utilizing the power of an RFID enabled system eliminated such shortages.

Streamlining the work-in-processes through asset tracking was just the beginning. CDO also evaluated their production flow from a fresh perspective and identified opportunities to further increase workflow efficiencies using asset identification and management software. The collaboration of Metalcraft and CDO Technologies resulted in saved time and money, as well as the confidence that the global leader’s continued success will be supported by their custom-built RFID solution.

If you have questions or would like to further discuss your unique asset tracking challenges, please email or call Todd Muckerheide.

Email: todd.muckerheide@cdotech.com
Phone: 937-476-2224

Case Study: City of Dayton Adopts RFID-Based Security Gate Automation

By Nova Editor,

CLIENT PROFILE AND ISSUE

As the City of Dayton analyzed operations, they recognized city vehicles, waste collection trucks, maintenance crews, and roadway service teams were unable to quickly enter and exit city-lots. Maintaining a guard at the gate during business hours, and trying to respond to after-hour needs, was not economically feasible. Manually checking credentials was inefficient and often caused traffic back-ups. This issue was exacerbated during peak traffic times, after-hour operations, or in emergency situations.

DISCOVERY PROCESS

Designing an automated gate system began with defining a means to automatically identify each vehicle. The City of Dayton worked with CDO Technologies to identify, design, and test an automobile tag containing passive Radio Frequency Identification (RFID). Tags either hung in the vehicle’s windshield or were placed on the front-face of the vehicle. RFID tag selection was customized to accommodate vehicles ranging in size from waste collection trucks to riding lawn-mowers and guard against inclement weather conditions impacting RFID effectiveness range.

SOLUTION

With a more efficient gateway, the City of Dayton sought to decrease response time, eliminate vehicles blocking the main thoroughfare while waiting to enter the lot, and ensure roadways would be more efficiently cared for during weather emergencies. Applying an automated solution would eliminate the financial responsibility of a full-time guard and more efficiently approve entry for authorized vehicles while developing a record of activity for additional analysis.

To accommodate a greater volume of vehicles more quickly, the lot entry underwent reconfiguration to include a wider driveway onto the street, a greater distance between the street and the entry gate, and a gate system containing RFID readers which would quickly identify a vehicle. Fence posts lining the driveway were equipped with RFID readers controlled by and reporting to CDO’s High-Value Asset Tracking (HVAT) software. With passive RFID in place, gates opened automatically upon vehicle identification.

RESULTS

Implementing passive RFID into its entrance re-design significantly improved the City of Dayton vehicle-flow efficiency while reducing the expense of a full-time guard. The City also plans to use data collected by the system to identify additional ways to serve its citizens. CDO’s tailored solution helped the City of Dayton decrease response time, eliminate vehicles blocking, and ensure roadways would be more efficiently cared for during weather emergencies.

If you have questions or would like to further discuss your unique asset tracking challenges, please email or call Todd Muckerheide.

Email: todd.muckerheide@cdotech.com
Phone: 937-476-2224

Case Study: Stoll & Co. Increases Inventory Visibility with Passive RFID

By Nova Editor,

CLIENT PROFILE AND ISSUE

Since 1983, Stoll & Co. has been a respected name in the watch repair industry. As their clientele has grown, so has the number of watches and parts Stoll & Co keep track of manually. Over the years, employees spent an increasing amount of time locating watches to be repaired or shipped. Time spent locating items would be better spent serving customers.

DISCOVERY PROCESS

With the utmost concerns of efficiency and security, Stoll & Co. partnered with CDO Technologies, to create a solution to their tracking issues. They sought a tracking system that could locate each watch quickly, and after reviewing their processes, CDO recommended using a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tag-based solution.

SOLUTION

CDO worked with Stoll & Co. to place a passive RFID tag on each watch carrier bag. When a watch was needed, employees could use an RFID handheld reader to scan the area. The reader picks up the signal from the requisite tag to quickly locate the watch.

RESULTS

Prior to implementing CDO’s RFID based solution, Stoll & Co. staff spent nearly seven hours each day locating inventory items. After implementing CDO’s tracking solution, that time dropped to less than fifteen minutes each day. Because of this remarkable improvement, Stoll & Co. plans on implementing other visibility-based projects such as automated shipment validation and workflow efficiency monitoring.

If you have questions or would like to further discuss your unique asset tracking challenges, please email or call Todd Muckerheide.

Email: todd.muckerheide@cdotech.com
Phone: 937-476-2224