Serialized tracing provides the ability to track and trace the lifecycle of the products and parts. Unlike barcodes, Radio frequency identification (RFID), which is an important building block for internet of things (IoT), does not require a line of sight and has the advantages of recognizing many objects simultaneously and rapidly, and storing more information than barcodes. Therefore, RFID has been used in a variety of application domains such as logistics, distributions, and manufacturing, significantly improving traceability and process efficiency. In this study, we applied RFID to improve the just-in-sequence operation of an automotive inbound logistics process. First, we implemented an RFID-based visibility system for real-time traceability and control of part supply from the production lines of suppliers to the assembly line of a car manufacturer. Second, we developed an RFID-based sequence-error proofing system to avoid accidental line stops due to incorrect part sequencing. The whole system has been successfully installed in a rear-axle inbound logistics process of GM Korea. We achieved a significant amount of cost savings, especially due to the prevention of sequencing errors and part shortages, and the reduction of manual operations. Thorough cost-benefit analysis demonstrates the clear economic feasibility of using RFID technologies for the just-in-sequence inbound logistics in an automobile manufacturing environment.
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