The acceleration of global RFID adoption by retailers was the focus of a Big Ideas panel session hosted by Avery Dennison Retail Branding and Information Solutions (RBIS) at Retail’s “Big Show,” the National Retail Federation’s 103nd Annual Convention & EXPO. The panel, moderated by Mark Roberti, editor of RFID Journal Magazine, featured industry experts Francisco Melo, Avery Dennison RBIS’ vice president of global RFID; Dr. Bill Hardgrave, dean of the Harbert College of Business at Auburn University and the founder of the RFID Research Center; and Pam Sweeney, Macy’s senior vice president of logistics, systems and technology.
“Of the top 30 retailers in the U.S., two out of three have something going on with RFID. If you’re not doing it now, you’re already behind, and if that doesn’t scare you, it should,” said Hardgrave. “To succeed in the retail and apparel industry, you’ve got to solve the fundamentals first, which means inventory accuracy, and then you can focus on enhancing the customer experience. If you haven’t started addressing the fundamentals, you are behind.”
“RFID is about sales growth and improving customer experience,” said Sweeney. “We’re moving forward with additional categories and penetration into existing categories. The greater the penetration of RFID throughout the supply chain, the greater the benefits we see. I encourage more retailers to get on board.”
“We’re seeing a significant number of retailers piloting and adopting RFID around the world,” said Melo. “This is due to the return on investment RFID delivers, its ability to significantly improve inventory accuracy and the simplification of implementation.”