In the cliffs of Calvert County Maryland, a local power plant serving over a million households was looking for a new way to solve an old problem in their equipment room. National Office Systems was asked to review the storage challenges and designed a solution that not only solved the initial concern but provided a full lifecycle management process for important and high value assets.
RFID was identified as the primary solution to solve a majority of the challenges. The secondary solution was high density storage to provide quick visible review as well as security for the highest value items.
Our Professional Service Solutions team first inventoried and identified the different items, from simple wrenches to highly calibrated testing and measuring equipment. Secondly, identified the primary sites the items were assigned to (inventory site at plant, calibration lab, ongoing work sites). In addition, the maintenance requirements of service dates, calibration frequency and end of life date were identified. Finally, an RFID tag was placed on each item and all items were added to the RFID database.
The key component to the RFID solution was the overhead RFID readers which were placed at the door of the equipment room. This provided specific data on what was being checked in or out and connected directly to the database software system. Mobile handheld RFID readers were deployed in the field at primary work locations.
The Key Benefits
With a design layout employing the use of small hallway niches, NOS, Inc. was able to provide high-density bi-file filing systems. The systems were able to incorporate both standard locking lateral file cabinets, and open style library shelving. This application allowed maximum storage capabilities in a minimum amount of real estate. Additionally, NOS, Inc. used the modularity of their shelving packages to fit storage shelving into smaller odd shaped rooms, usually with columns interrupting the layouts. This solution gave the firm ample storage capacity in a small footprint.
- Full chain of custody management of assets, management can see at a glance exactly where each item is located.
- Service maintenance procedures could be followed which provides extended life of assets with highest level of performance.
- Calibration testing is done regularly which provides consistent accurate equipment for field use and readings.
- Lifecycle management for each asset was tracked, aiding in reporting for new asset acquisition and financial planning.
While this started as a simple storage challenge, it culminated into a comprehensive solution not only helping the power plant and the community at large (local and national) by providing access to well maintained, calibrated tools which keeps machinery
working for all.