How RFID Will Improve Your Manufacturing Efficiency

How RFID Will Improve Your Manufacturing Efficiency

With heavy competition and rising consumer expectations, manufacturing businesses are on the lookout for ways to streamline their operations and improve manufacturing efficiency. Radio frequency identification (RFID) technology has proven to be an extremely effective solution, allowing workers to quickly identify and track assets by location throughout the supply chain.

Whereas barcode tracking requires a direct line of sight and can only provide a certain level of data, RFID readers can easily track everything within the vicinity, and provide information on assets with pinpoint accuracy.

If you are looking for a way to improve manufacturing efficiency within your operations, here are a few ways RFID can help:

Filled with cutting-edge solutions, download our complete product catalog here.

Inventory Management

RFID has made great strides in improving inventory accuracy and providing accurate counts. Rather than requiring manual inventory counts be made, RFID can take in a wider range of data much quicker. Since no direct line of sight is required, you can complete inventory counts in mere minutes.

Strategically placing RFID readers around your warehouse allows you to keep track of progress. This can improve manufacturing efficiency while providing real-time visibility into inventory levels so you can easily monitor inventory levels and prevent against shrinkage. This is useful if you need to track expensive containers, pallets, or even individual assets. You get a real-time view of when products enter and leave your facility.

Workflow Optimization

RFID doesn’t require a direct line of sight, workers don’t have to go and manually find each barcode one by one to scan. By automating your data collection processes, you save on labor and virtually eliminate human error.

When you place sensors at the door, you can enable workers to drive forklifts full of inventory and assets into your warehouse, and it automatically scans all RFID tags as items pass through your doors. Since no direct line of sight is needed, inventory items don’t have to be counted and scanned one-by-one. RFID tags could effectively replace barcode labels so that you can easily collect data and improve manufacturing efficiency through warehouse automation.

Asset Management

Unlike barcodes, RFID technology doesn’t just tell you whether or not an item has been received or is in stock, it also tells you the exact location, which further reduces inventory errors that could be caused by misplaced inventory and drastically improve manufacturing efficiency. The value of RFID increases with the value of the item being tracked, because this method improves both accuracy and security, while helping to increase productivity within your operation itself.

RFID sensors can be placed in a variety of areas around the warehouse, so the nearest sensor can tell workers where an order is located. This expedites the shipping process, because it allows inventory to be easily located without requiring workers to spend time tracking an order down and searching the entire warehouse for it if it isn’t in the correct place. Orders can be picked and shipped in minimal time.

Manufacturing solutions from Honeywell are great at helping boost efficiency, quality control, and workflow automation within your operation. This technology takes labor-intensive tasks and transforms them into simple, efficient processes driven by automation.

Interested in learning more about Honeywell’s manufacturing solutions and how RFID can improve manufacturing efficiency? Contact Informs, Inc. today!

How to Improve Patient Care and Safety in Hospitals with Mobile Devices

How to Improve Patient Care and Safety in Hospitals with Mobile Devices

In busy hospital environments, patient care and safety are top priorities, but sometimes they can fall by the wayside when inefficient processes slow workflow rather than streamline it. Fortunately, with improvements in technology and healthcare, there are solutions available that effectively improve patient care while simultaneously saving time and increasing productivity.

Hospitals and other healthcare facilities can leverage automatic data collection technologies like mobile computers, barcode scanners, and more to keep patients safe and well cared for. Here are a few solutions that improve patient care:

Filled with cutting-edge solutions, download our complete product catalog here.

Barcoding

Patient misidentification can lead to disastrous consequences, and manual record-keeping inevitably leads to human error. Barcode wristbands are an easy, effective way to ensure that patients can always be identified accurately.

Patients aren’t the only ones being helped by barcoding technology. Hospitals and healthcare facilities can use barcode labels to identify and track specimens and supplies. This prevents against misidentification, reduces errors, and ensures that inventory is always accurate and up-to-date.

RFID

There are many advantages to real-time location data, and RFID technology is a great way to access these benefits. Real-time tracking can be used on campus for hospitals to track anything from surgical equipment to IT equipment.

Real-time tracking can improve patient safety by ensuring you are always aware of the supplies you have on-hand, and where they are located. When a patient needs a certain procedure, you want to make sure you have everything you need readily available. This also has a secondary cost benefit by helping you to avoid purchasing excess supplies.

Mobility

You can simultaneously improve patient care while you increase the efficiency of doctors and nurses by providing them with mobile devices. These work wonders at keeping workers connected both to each other, and to their patients. Connectivity provides instantaneous access to critical data, which frees up time for healthcare workers to focus more on providing quality care to patients. It also allows them to remotely monitor patients and be alerted in real-time when alarms are triggered, so they can respond promptly.

With the healthcare industry being as widespread and valued as it is, there is a major opportunity to increase efficiency and reduce errors using Honeywell connected technology. These solutions make it easier for healthcare providers to effectively track patients, medications, assets, and inventory, while also providing an auditable record of their activities to help ensure compliance with best practices.

One of the most recommended devices for healthcare professionals looking to improve patient care is the Honeywell Dolphin CT50h clinical smartphone. Specifically designed to help clinicians better focus on their patients, the CT50h provides mobile access to clinical systems, vital patient data, and other hospital staff. The rugged design makes it perfectly suited for busy environments, while the long battery lifespan ensures no downtime for a full 12-hour shift.

The CT50h also boasts unparalleled scanning performance for both 1D and 2D barcodes, which helps with correct patient identification as well as data entry, making it a great tool to help improve patient care.

Improving Care with Technology

As a member of the healthcare industry, your primary focus will always be on ensuring you provide your patients with the best care possible. To achieve that, you need to have the right tools and technology at your disposal. Manufacturers like Honeywell have gone to great lengths to help healthcare providers improve patient care and safety. If you are interested in learning what Honeywell devices can do for your operation, contact the team at Informs today.

Label Quality: How the Right Label Extends the Life of Your Printers

You Can’t Print Money, But Here’s How You Can Save It with Better Printing Supplies

Printing supplies, such as barcode labels, are often treated as a commodity. Many companies buy cheap labels because the up-front costs are lower, and they think they’ll save money.

However, the up-front cost savings often come with a long-term price. When you’re using low-grade and low-cost labels and printing supplies, you can end up spending a lot more money on your printers, and as a result, costing your company a lot of money in lost productivity.

Here are the hidden expenses that result from using low-cost printing supplies and how you can save considerable long-term cost by investing in better quality.

  1. Low-cost labels are often produced with substandard and inconsistent materials that can damage expensive equipment such as your label printer printheads. Many have sandpaper-like surfaces that cause printhead elements to fail prematurely, which costs you hundreds or thousands of dollars in early replacements.

 

Premature printhead wear can also result in poor print quality and unreadable labels. That means more re-scanning and delays in your workflows as your workers deal with these issues.

 

  1. If you’re using cheap labels for direct thermal printing, heat sensitivities often become an issue, and lower quality materials often require constant adjustments to your printer settings to avoid barcode scanning issues.

 

  1. If you’re using pre-printed colors on your labels but buying them from a low-cost manufacturer, your colors can actually end up transferring to your printhead and causing an ink buildup that slows down your printing and can cause print quality issues.

 

  1. Low-cost labels are generally produced for the most basic applications and not for applications where labels might be exposed to sunlight, moisture, water, or chemicals. If you choose cheap labels and they’re not made with the right materials to withstand these conditions, you can easily end up with damaged and unreadable barcodes and information.

 

  1. Adhesion is another common problem with low-cost barcode labels because they’re often produced with substandard adhesives and aren’t matched to specific labeling applications. Your labels can end up peeling or falling off, leaving your assets, products, or shipments unidentified and not trackable.

 

  1. Buying cheap labels often means you’ll end up buying cheap supplies or potentially mismatching your low-cost label with your printer ribbon. Since specific labeling applications require a proper match between the label and ribbon, the wrong ribbon can quickly cause print fading and rub-off.

 

How to Avoid High Long-Term Labeling Costs

At Informs, we work with our customers to minimize long-term labeling and operational costs by matching the right printing supplies with your application requirements and avoiding the commodity trap.

In our experience, our best recommendation is to invest in Zebra-certified printing supplies. Zebra’s labels, ribbons, and printing supplies are manufactured with consistent and ISO-certified processes, which ensures the highest quality and performance.

They’re rigorously pre-tested on Zebra printers to assess printhead wear, and they’re thoroughly tested for adhesion, durability, and scannability according to the environment and demands of each application.

In the end, you get labels that print and perform flawlessly, reduce your printhead wear and related costs, reduce your supplies usage, and save your workers hundreds or even thousands of hours in reprinting, printer adjustments, servicing, or repairs.

As an added bonus, if you use Zebra printers and agree to use Zebra supplies exclusively, you get 100% protection against premature printhead failure. If a printhead ever fails early, it will be replaced at no cost.

To learn more about Zebra supplies and get expert advice for your application, contact our labeling experts at Informs for more information.

Mobility Edge and Device Support Through Android R

If you haven’t had “the talk”, it’s time you do – because your security depends on it. It’s time to talk about the Mobility Edge™ platform by Honeywell. Mobility Edge is the only platform that guarantees the longest security lifecycle support in the industry, by utilizing Android™ R and Google-supplied security patches through 2023. In addition, Honeywell offers the Sentinel Service, providing two more years of security patches, based on back-porting from future OS releases. Talk about security!

What Are the Facts?
Now let’s talk facts. Hardware refresh is expensive. It’s time consuming. And it’s precarious. But here’s another fact. Mobility Edge eliminates these three factors without even breaking a sweat. Incorporating an enterprise wide approach to patch releases, the total cost of ownership is significantly diminished, saving time, money and a whole lot of frustration. Plus, thanks to Android R, the hardware is designed to support twice as many OS upgrades as the competition. And here’s a fun fact: you’ll never have to deal with fragmented mobile computing again!

It’s also a fact that it’s impossible to predict the future, no matter how informed we remain. That is why Honeywell denotes two years as the appropriate length of time to responsibly deliver security patches based on backporting. It is due to the Android R compatibility that this is possible, as opposed to five or ten years of backporting offered by competitors. The fact is, Honeywell believes that five to ten years is quite simply an unacceptable risk.

 How Does This Impact Future Devices?
In previous analysis of the Mobility Edge platform, we identified numerous advantages: accelerated deployments, optimized performance, enhanced security and extended device lifecycle, leading to a unified mobile enterprise. We’ve discussed how this agility drives performance, productivity, worker satisfaction and revenue. But amazingly, Honeywell didn’t stop there. They essentially “future-proofed” devices so that that all subsequent mobile hardware and software upgrades would integrate seamlessly with future versions of Android. That is the epitome of lifecycle longevity.

How Do I Get Started?
The facts are clear. Honeywell’s Mobility Edge platform, supported by Android R, is the smart, seamless and cost-effective way to deploy mobile solutions that deliver intuitive integration and future adaptability. If you’re ready to respond to the facts, but the next steps seem daunting, Informs can help with every step, from understanding migration requirements, to integrating and deploying the Mobility Edge platform with Android R across your enterprise.

Let the technical experts at Informs provide:

  • Guidance on OS migration requirements and implementation.
  • Direction on enterprise-wide device integration.
  • Navigation through the comprehensive line of innovative Honeywell Mobility Edge compatible products and solutions.
  • ANSWERS to all your Mobility Edge questions.

It’s time to face the facts and look to the future. Contact an Informs Specialist today if you’re ready to elevate your mobile enterprise environment to the next level.

 

The Best Option for Migrating from Windows Embedded Handheld

With Microsoft ending all support for Windows Embedded mobile operating systems, making the switch to Android has become the primary strategy for thousands of enterprises.

Organizations as diverse as Home Depot, Whirlpool, Best Buy and even the U.S. Air Force are all turning to Android to achieve better mobile productivity and efficiency, especially as Microsoft’s support for enterprise mobile computing has waned.

For most companies, migrating to Android isn’t a matter of “if” but “when.” Depending on the version of Windows Embedded you’ve been running on your devices, support has already ended or will end by January 2020. That means there will be no further updates and no security patches.

That could create a world of opportunities for potential cyberattackers, particularly at a time when threats against business of all sizes are on the rise.

Fortunately, future-proofing your mobile operations and protecting against these threats is easier and less expensive than ever before. This is thanks to a major change in the enterprise mobility industry.

As Microsoft has steadily turned away from the enterprise market and frustrated end users by making it impossible to upgrade from most of its older operating systems to Windows 10 IoT, Android has emerged as the new future.

Android is now the OS of choice for all major enterprise device manufacturers, enjoying over 80% market share in enterprise mobile devices, while Windows 10 IoT is only available on 4% of all new devices produced today.

Manufacturers such as Zebra Technologies have worked closely with Google to develop the next generation of mobile solutions powered by Android, with over 20 models of Zebra Android devices in use around the world.

In fact, Google includes a number of Zebra’s latest devices on its Android Enterprise Recommended list, a compilation of devices that have met its most stringent requirements for security, usability, and rugged performance.

At Informs, we recommend Zebra’s enterprise Android mobile computers for their unparalleled durability, ease of use, and lower total cost of ownership. Combined with Android, they make it much easier to migrate to a new, modern OS for several key reasons:

Flexible Migration
Android is open source and customizable, with access to vast developer resources and app store apps. This makes it much less time-consuming and expensive to migrate or develop your own custom Android apps.

Powerful Security
Thanks to new Mobility Extensions developed by Zebra, Android devices are powerfully secure. You get complete control over every device, app, connection, and user. Over-the-air updates also make it much easier to apply the latest security patches, while Zebra’s LifeGuard™ for Android™ gives you 10 years of guaranteed OS support.

Intuitive & Easy Interface
Android devices are easier and faster to use, with an extremely intuitive interface that is familiar to many workers and makes it much easier to train new employees.

More Productivity & Efficiency
Zebra’s Android devices are revolutionizing manufacturing and warehousing processes with advanced scanning engines, faster processors, and more memory. In fact, with Zebra’s TC8000 touch mobile computer, you can increase worker productivity by up to 14% per shift.

Planning Your OS Migration
By switching to Android, you can turn the necessity of OS migration into a win for your business. But if you don’t already have a plan in place, now is the time to act.

At Informs, we can help you develop the right OS migration plan with a strategic, manageable, and budget-friendly approach. We’ll also help you find the right Zebra Android solutions to match your business needs.

Contact us now to get started and request a free consultation.

Mobility Edge Products and Support

There is power in unification. The type of power that drives revenue, productivity and efficiency. Honeywell’s Mobility Edge™ is the power behind a dynamic, unified hardware and software platform that will transform your mobile device management. It will transform your business.

The Mobility Edge platform doesn’t just boast about extended lifecycles and enhanced security. It delivers. It even guarantees it. Mobility Edge is the only platform that offers support through Android™ R, guaranteeing the longest security lifecycle in the industry. Now that’s the power behind unification.

But how do you unleash this power to see real results? How do you integrate this unification into daily operations and create cohesion and efficiency throughout your enterprise mobility environment? Here’s how:

  1. Accelerated Deployments – By validating all mobile devices just once and deploying throughout the entire enterprise, you save both time and money. Mobility Edge expedites development, certification, setup and training through a rapid provisioning suite and versatile capabilities.
  1. Optimized Business Performance – Powerful embedded tools throughout the platform drive faster data capture and secure worker communications, leading to an intuitive user experience. This facilitates user adoption, enabling employees to work smarter, faster and more efficiently.
  1. Extended Security Lifecycle – Mobility Edge can support twice as many operating system upgrades as its competitors via enterprise-wide patch releases and future-proof hardware. Support through Android R ensures the longest security lifecycle available today.
  1. Strengthened Security – Say farewell to fragmented mobile computing and hello to a dynamic hardware and software platform that delivers agility, integration, security, scalability and consistency across your entire mobile environment.

We’ve addressed the “how”. But the “what” can be complex and confusing. How do you identify the right mobility devices to synergize with the Mobility Edge platform? Informs can help you select the products that align with your business goals and promote seamless integration, ease of use, improved productivity and increased savings. Informs Specialists have the training, skills and expertise to guide and support you through every step of the process.

Recommended products built on the Mobility Edge platform include:

  1. Dolphin CT40 Mobile Computer

Built on Android and the Mobility Edge platform, this full-touch, durable mobile computer is designed to help businesses accelerate workflows and provide a seamless customer experience.

  1. Dolphin CT60 Handheld Computer

This robust computer is built to deploy easily in the field and is ideal for anywhere, anytime connectivity, delivering fast data capture and maximizing uptime and productivity.

  1. Dolphin CN80 Mobile Computer

Improve the speed and accuracy of day-to-day operations with the full-touch or key-dependent capabilities of the CN80 handheld computer.

  1. CN75 / CN75e Mobile Computers

These ultra-rugged mobile computers offer versatility, reliability, power and ergonomic comfort in a compact form, specifically designed for mobile field service workers.

  1. Thor VM1A Vehicle-Mounted Computer

Enjoy the easy to use and easy to maintain features of the Thor VM1, while experiencing accelerated provisioning and deployment, ultimate performance and lower TCO.

When you’re ready to infuse your business with the power of the Mobility Edge platform, contact an Informs Specialist. We can help you bring unity to your mobile enterprise environment.