In 2005, Kenneth Schoening started A-1 Packaging Solutions, Inc. with a mission: help large corporations realize that sustainable packaging solutions aren’t only possible, they’re profitable. He applied his years of experience running a $350 million business unit for a Fortune 500 company to A-1’s first project—a returnable packaging container redesign that saved the customer $200 million over the next 10 years, and continues to save them money today.
The Move to RFID Tracking
It wasn’t long before companies turned to A-1 for help in organizing the controlled chaos that is a manufacturing or warehouse and distribution operation. A-1 identified seven major challenges our clients were facing:
- First In-First Out Inventory (FIFO)
- Cycle Counts
- Shipping Errors
- Tracking Returnables
- Training New Hires
We knew we could help but we knew barcodes, with their lack of universal standards and highly manual application, weren’t the answer. A-1 started exploring Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) as a means of helping those warehouse and manufacturing employees find items, , take inventory, eliminate shipping errors and more. RFID tracking is faster and helps reduce the risk of shipping errors.
A 3-Fold System
The RFID technology we found was good, but it wasn’t able to address all seven of those primary challenges. Instead of encouraging clients to adopt multiple technologies to meet their needs, A-1 saw the opportunity to improve upon the RFID tracking system, so manufacturers and distributors could solve their biggest challenges with one solution. The result was the LivePoint® SDW Forklift-based RFID solution with self-correcting technology, a unique 3-fold system:
- LivePoint® Floor Tags: Traditional RFID floor tags are a costly and time-consuming solution, as they’re half-an-inch thick and have to be buried in the concrete. LivePoint® Floor Tags are like Band-Aids: simply stick the thin adhesive tags to a concrete surface. They offer incredible durability without the need to dig holes in your floor, and you get 100% accurate real-time feedback about where each product is and what’s happening in your facility.
- LivePoint® SDW Software: System Directed Workforce (SDW) Software offers direction as well as feedback. Employees are acknowledged for a job well done and alerted (via audio and visual alarms) when they’ve made a mistake. It requires them to correct it on their own, otherwise escalating the issue to a manager, ensuring the incorrect item is not shipped or stored.
- Dock Door Systems: Instead of requiring the purchase of a $5,000-10,000 dock door portal—which only lets you see what’s actually going through the door—you can use LivePoint® Floor Tags at each dock door at a cost of about $250 per door. Meanwhile, the forklift-based system allows you to track everything throughout the facility, not just as it leaves the building. LivePoint® records where it is, records where it’s going, and ensure it gets on the truck—all in real time with 100% accuracy.
At A-1, we’re committed to helping our clients reduce costs, and we approach that in three ways:
- The most advanced RFID solution available: LivePoint® lets you see where everything is in your facility, and it allows forklift drivers to take ownership of their work by alerting them to mistakes and forcing them to make corrections. It helps you save time and money while making the employees’ jobs easier.
- Intermediate bulk containers (IBC): Our high-quality IBCs are available in 275- and 330-gallon sizes. They’re returnable and reusable, and they can be tracked with LivePoint®.
- Creative leasing packages: Leasing allows companies to reduce costs today, while preserving your capital for emergencies and other areas of growth.
Contact A-1 Packaging Solutions today to learn more about RFID tracking and how it can help you save time and money at your facility.