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Inventory management, exponentially simplified

Inventory management, exponentially simplified

With RFID Technology and Mobile App, you can electronically track iron, eliminating human error.

The System

With Weir RFID technology, you can electronically track your assets by serial number for safe and efficient inventory management, even when parts are difficult to access or shrink-wrapped.Rigorously tested, RFID tags are installed on our customers’ assets at the Weir manufacturing facility in Fort Worth, Texas. Tags can also be provided and installed for use on other manufacturers’ products.

Combining RFID technology with Weir’s Asset Management Program (AMP) further streamlines the inspection process. It lets you pull certification documents, historical inspection data, or other relevant information on-demand. You can update status or assign an asset to a hierarchal organization. Over time, this enhanced data library can also be used for predictive analytics.

The App

Available for the iPhone® and Android®, Weir’s RFID Mobile App puts inventory management in the palm of your hand. The smartphone app connects with the Asset Management Program—AMP for short—delivering the RFID advantage to the field.

The Challenge

For U.S. Well Services, LLC, manually tracking iron in the field had become costly in terms of time and labor. Using pen and paper, it took three workers an entire day to manually log 900 pieces of iron by part type alone—an archaic and arduous process fraught with human error. Serial numbers were frequently covered in mud or required the moving of pallets to reveal.

Safety and compliance also required that certificates on every piece of equipment be maintained and instantly retrievable. This information was kept in binders in the company’s office. Whenever an inspector requested these certificates, employees had to comb through thousands of vulnerable files, which inevitably led to downtime and upset customers.

Because manual tracking was so cumbersome, inventories were rarely up-to-date. The company never knew what equipment was actually on-site, which led to making unnecessary purchases or a reluctance to take on additional work, severely impacting the bottom line.

The Solution

U.S. Well Services replaced its manual iron-tracking process with Weir’s RFID Technology and RFID Mobile App. Using either a Zebra Technologies 8500 or Technology Systems Ltd. (TSL) 1166 UHF RFID handheld reader, employees could simply point and scan, accurately obtaining the serial number for each piece of iron in seconds.

Employees wouldn’t have to worry about human error; they couldn’t accidentally double-scan a serial number and edits could be made to the data on-site. Also, the system could be used for Weir and other OEM equipment. In remote locations where low-signal strength was a problem, the RFID app allowed the user to upload scanned data once they reconnected to a cell tower or wifi signal.

The Results

After using RFID technology for a year, U.S. Well Services completely eliminated human error, reduced costs, and improved productivity. What once took multiple employees three to four days now takes one worker three to four hours. That’s a 94% reduction in man-hours—and a complete elimination of human error. The process is now easy—access, mud and shrink-wrap are no longer problematic.

Because the process is so efficient, the company conducts inventories every week instead of every six months. Being able to instantly determine their assets allows them to ascertain in as little as five minutes whether they can take on additional work—something that previously took two days. Moreover, they don’t have to worry about purchasing redundant equipment, saving an estimated $1 million annually.

Now, when inspectors ask for certificates, they can be emailed immediately, saving hours of valuable time at the office and the customer’s jobsite. The system also lets them track iron by stage, providing the company with an important metric.

Adopting RFID technology has dramatically improved U.S. Well Service’s bottom line and made them more responsive to meeting their customers’ needs.

Key features and benefits

  • Verify asset inspection status quickly on site
  • Reduce man-hours for inventory control on site or at service facility
  • Minimize human error during inspection
  • Update and store iron and RFID asset tag data immediately via AMP
  • Build database over time for predictive analytics
  • Use with new or retrofit applications

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