Wal-Mart Stores Inc continues to expand its RFID capability to more facilities, enabling another 400 Wal-Mart stores by the end of this fiscal year, said Rollin Ford, Wal-Mart executive vice-president and chief information officer. At the RFID Journal Live conference in Orlando FL, Ford also discussed the technology's benefits to business and consumers.
Ford said benefits include a 30 percent reduction of out-of-stocks, reduction of excess inventory in the supply chain, and sustainability impacts. He also outlined advances including pallet locators now used at Sam's Club locations--increasing inventory accuracy and reducing member waiting time.
"Our focus on using RFID to improve in-stocks for our customers means eliminating extra trips they may make to our store, or to others," he said. "On a daily basis, more than 24 million people shop our stores. If 100,000 extra trips are avoided by having items in stock, we will save customers $22.8 million a year in gas savings and reduce greenhouse gases by 80,209 metric tons.
"In the near future, customers may be able to enjoy advantages such as automatic warranty activation on electronics, freshness assurance on foods thanks to cold chain monitoring, and enhanced product safety as a result of faster, more accurate recalls and better freshness monitoring," he said.