Item Management ItemAware Software

Tool Tracking Software Compatible with All Work Trucks

Save the Date for The Utility Expo

September 26-28, 2023 | Louisville, KY

Stop by Booth #S-4151 to meet our team and learn how ItemAware can go to work for you!

The Tool Tracking Solution You Need

“Work truck” is a generic term that describes a wide range of vehicles used for daily business operations including fire trucks, utility vehicles, telecommunication trucks, and gas trucks. Although the capabilities and purposes of each vehicle varies, the cruciality of asset tracking remains the same. Without proper equipment on board, each vehicle operator lacks the essential tools they need to get their job done correctly, without untimely delays.

ItemAware, Aware Innovations’ modern asset tracking software, is agile, offering the flexibility you need to seamlessly integrate into your work trucks – no matter how big or small your fleet is. If you have essential equipment that you need to keep track of, we have the solution you need to ensure that your tools never get lost again.

Continue reading to learn how Aware Innovations’ revolutionary technology is compatible with fire trucks, utility vehicles, telecommunication trucks, and gas trucks.

Fires Don’t Wait for Lost Tools to be Found

Firefighters depend on their tools to keep themselves as well as their communities safe during cases of emergency. It is easy to understand how essential, lifesaving equipment such as radios, flashlights, and specialized rescue tools can be mistakenly misplaced while firefighters work to restore order in emergency situations. However, as firemen head back to the fire station, they deserve to have the peace of mind knowing that every tool made it back on their truck and is ready for the next time they need it.

ItemAware goes to work on firetrucks by tracking each asset, providing the last known location of even the smallest, most easily misplaced tools. Our robust technology prioritizes safety by ensuring that firefighters always have the right tools, in the right place, at the right time. Aware Innovations’ intuitive asset tracking software offers the peace of mind firemen need to feel confident that they have the tools required to safely do their job while protecting their communities.

Fighting fires is mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausting. Firemen shouldn’t be expected to spend additional time and energy searching for tools that have been misplaced during and after an accident. ItemAware takes this burden off firefighters by automatically housing a log of tool locations readily available within our intuitive app. This perceptive feature eliminates the possibility of human error, allowing firemen to get the rest they need back at the fire station rather than expending even more energy searching for lost tools at the scene of the accident.

Utility and Telecommunications Equipment Aren’t Easily Replaceable

“After implementing the system [ItemAware], I found $175,000 of duplicate tools.” – Steve Sarno | VP of Power Delivery at Concurrent Group, Customer of RingPower

Utility contractors have better, more profitable ways to spend their money rather than replacing misplaced tools, especially if the equipment in question isn’t actually lost. Replacing missing tools is not only costly, but with recent supply chain disruptions, can be nearly impossible to obtain quickly. Companies can avoid this headache all together by implementing a modern asset tracking solution that takes the guesswork out of inventory management.

When the lights go out, citizens depend on linemen to restore the power quickly, without unnecessary delays. Time is essential, especially in cases where severe weather such as extreme cold fronts threaten the safety of community members. But how can these professionals effectively do this, if they tools required to get the job done efficiently, are lost on some long-forgotten jobsite?

In today’s world, people are connected 24/7. Telecommunication technicians make this possible by developing and maintaining communication systems. Out in the field, their work trucks become mobile workshops, housing their most important tools. But what happens when time is wasted, and profits are forfeited because industry experts are spending time searching for lost equipment?

ItemAware can solve this problem by effortlessly integrating into all work vehicles including fleets of bucket trucks and diggers. Our intuitive software allows industry professionals to effortlessly tag their assets, making each item conveniently trackable while listing appropriate status’ such as active, broken, in storage, etc. ItemAware also keeps every employee on the same page while enhancing personal accountability. Our easy-to-use asset log details who used what equipment last, answering questions that commonly slow down searches.

When Fuel Delivery Can’t Wait

Image from Reading Trucks

Gas truck drivers have a critical job to do. Without on time, uncomplicated delivery of fuel, gas stations wouldn’t be able to sell gasoline to patrons while construction worksites would come to a screeching halt. However, arriving on time is only half the battle. Gas truck operators not only need to get fuel transported safely, but they also need to have the required tools to get the gasoline off the truck and into its destination.

Drivers need convenient, dependable access to their essential equipment to get their job done both effectively and efficiently. A quick tool search in our intuitive app will answer any questions a gas truck operator may have surrounding the exact location of their equipment. ItemAware’s ability to pinpoint items on board gives drivers the confidence they need to head to their next delivery location, knowing that they have the equipment required to safely unload the fuel they are responsible for transporting.

ItemAware Seamlessly Integrates into All Work Trucks

Whether you work as a fireman or are employed in the utility, telecommunications, or gas industries, ItemAware is the asset tracking solution you need to keep track of your most important tools and equipment. From durable, easy-to-use tags to intuitive map views, our robust software has exactly what you need to ensure that you never misplace a tool again.

What are you waiting for? Get started today by requesting a free 30-minute demo with one of our knowledgeable representatives.

About the Author

Jessica Frye is an expert content writer with 7+ years of professional writing experience. She earned her B.A. in Communication Studies from Wright State University and has worked alongside companies in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Jessica is passionate about community and enjoys using the power of words to not only cause people to react but to take initiative.

Events Features News

ItemAware: The Multifaceted Asset Tracking Solution

Set up and ready for Work Truck Week to begin.

Aware Innovations would like to express our sincere appreciation to everyone who joined us at Work Truck Week in Indianapolis, Indiana. This one-of-a-kind event was a great opportunity to see our robust asset tracking software in action while learning firsthand the breadth of its application across many industries. It was our pleasure to meet so many interested patrons and show them exactly how our intuitive software can go to work for them.

ItemAware is the one-size-fits-all asset tracking solution that can be applied to a wide range of market sectors. Our robust, modern software has demonstrated measurable benefits for companies operating in the utility, IT, and medical industries. Cross-industry benefits gained by maximizing the utilization of ItemAware include significantly increasing productivity while simultaneously reducing costs.

Continue reading to learn how ItemAware’s features can be maximized to promote operational efficiencies while cutting unnecessary expenditures.

Maps: Making Your Inventory Fully Visible at All Times

Having the right equipment, in the right place, at the right time is easier said than done. Manual inventory tracking is prone to human error and lacks the capacity to keep counts current in real-time. Our industry-leading asset tracking solution, ItemAware, automates the inventory process by giving you constant, easy-to-interpret access to the exact location of your tools, equipment, and materials.

With ItemAware’s support, you can feel confident that your team will always have the tools and equipment they need to get the job done right the first time.

Automating Inventory Processes: Talent Shouldn’t be Wasted on Menial Tasks

“Any diligent asset management process requires constant involvement from staff but automating the process with RFID requires far less of it.” – Wes Clark, Office of the Chief Information Officer, US Patent & Trademark Office

You hired your employees for a reason. Each team member has the expertise your company needs to be profitable as well as maintain your status as an industry leader. When an employee isn’t being fully utilized, they begin to become disengaged, and their productivity suffers. A study by Gallup found that disengaged employees cost their companies the equivalent of 18% of their yearly salary. This is a shocking statistic that is easily preventable with the implementation of our asset tracking solution, ItemAware. 

One of our customers, the Defense Logistics Agency’s Red River Army Depot, reduced wasted personnel hours by 87% by partnering with Aware Innovations to track 23,000 military vehicles using cellular GPS. This use case proves that you can stop wasting manpower on tasks that can easily be handled by our intuitive asset tracking software. ItemAware automates the inventory process, taking the menial tasks off your employees’ plates and allowing them to refocus their expertise on more profitable goals.

Choke Points: Prevent Misplaced Equipment and Theft

Replacing equipment that isn’t actually lost can quickly cut into your bottom line while also being a barrier to productivity. This financial bleed is only further aggravated when theft inevitably enters the picture. ItemAware’s constant scanning capabilities gives companies the ability to prevent item misplacement while also putting a permanent end to theft. When your employees have the equipment they need readily available, operational efficiencies increase as does revenue streams.

Companies are protecting their budgets by staying lean with the number of tools and assets they have on hand. Our intuitive asset tracking software allows companies to keep quantities right-sized by tracking real-time inventories, eliminating the cost of excess equipment.

Alerts: Never Wonder Where Your Equipment Is at Again

ItemAware gives you the freedom to set your own alerts, ensuring that you are always in the know whenever an item leaves or arrives at a specified location. Critical alerts promote employee accountability by forcing users to check items in and out, giving you a reliable record of who had what equipment last.

History: Because Record Keeping Matters

A log of an item’s location, maintenance, and repair history is an invaluable resource. ItemAware conveniently tracks all of this data and more in a convenient, user-friendly format that can be accessed 24/7, saving you time on tedious record keeping.

User Access: Assign Permissions Exactly as You See Fit

Because no two jobs are ever the same, not every user needs to have the same software permissions. ItemAware allows you to decide who needs what access by giving you the ability to determine the capabilities of each user in the software.

Employees have enough data to sift through – they don’t need to further fall into the trap of information overload. Setting the exact permissions for every users helps your employees increase their productivity by limiting their access to need-to-know information only.

Status: Notetaking Has Never Been So Easy

Even people with the best memories cannot be expected to recall all details at all times – especially when hundreds of pieces of tools and equipment are involved. Our intuitive asset tracking software allows users to view, edit, and take note of an item’s current status. With ItemAware, you will never again waste time trying to remember which tools are broken, active, in storage, etc.

ItemAware: Your Answer to Increase Productivity While Decreasing Costs

Whether you are tracking tools, IT assets, medical equipment, or patients, ItemAware is your solution to productivity and cost issues. Our modern asset tracking software has multifaceted capabilities that can be tailored to meet your unique needs, no matter your work environment, while automating your inventory processes.

What are you waiting for? A better, more reliable solution to all of your asset tracking needs is just a phone call away.

Let’s Get Started Today

We are here to help you. Get started today by requesting a free 30-minute demo with one of our knowledgeable representatives.

About the Author

Jessica Frye is an expert content writer with 7+ years of professional writing experience. She earned her B.A. in Communication Studies from Wright State University and has worked alongside companies in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Jessica is passionate about community and enjoys using the power of words to not only cause people to react but to take initiative.

Item Management ItemAware

ItemAware: A Cradle to Grave Item Management Solution

ItemAware is the asset tracking and item management solution that will last for the entirety of your assets’ lifecycle. Continue reading to learn how ItemAware can be the solution you need to track your assets from cradle to grave.

You’ve heard us say it before – time is money. No one should be expected to spend valuable resources on implementing an asset tracking and item management solution that is only applicable during its infancy. Wouldn’t you rather invest in a software that will grow with your business as opposed to regularly overhauling your technology as your needs evolve?

We’ve spent years developing our software to track items and all the associated lifecycle events, from induction to disposal, cradle to grave. This includes location changes, inspections, maintenance, calibration, and who’s touched the assets over its life.

Big or small, our technology will grow alongside your business’s ever evolving needs. Don’t pick a solution that only works for today’s minimum requirements. We encourage you to have the forethought to consider where you want your business to go and choose a software that is compatible with your goals.

Continue reading to learn how ItemAware’s adaptable software grows with your progressing needs while extending the longevity of the tools you have on hand. 

Needs Change. Your Asset Tracking and Item Management Solution Doesn’t Have To.

You should never feel restricted by your asset tracking and item management software. Your goal is to grow your business and that’s exactly what ItemAware will help you do. 

Our team of experts has designed our modern technology to be scalable. This means that your company’s size has no impact on the benefits you will see by using ItemAware. 

We get it – you have a lot of “stuff”. Wondering if your company may be too large for ItemAware to handle? Don’t think twice about it. You can rest easier knowing that our software is currently serving the US Patent and Trademark Office by tracking 130K items and saving $1.2M annually

Inspection, Maintenance, and Calibration Matters.

For many companies, their assets are the backbone of their entire business. Extend the longevity of your assets by allowing our robust software to remind you of critical inspection, maintenance, and calibration requirements while helping to ensure misplaced items are easily found. Without these critical items, normal operations could not move forward. 

For the utility and construction industries, not only are tools a requirement for most businesses, but they are generally not easily or affordably replaceable, especially considering current supply chain disruptions. 

Tools and equipment, like almost every other product in life, require regular maintenance to extend usability. It is no secret that assets can quickly lose their functionality if not properly cared for. But keeping track of inspection, maintenance, and calibration deadlines for every piece of equipment can be a full-time job all on its own. Most businesses don’t have the time or staffing available to dedicate to keeping fully updated maintenance records – but who can afford not to? Partner with us so that we can help take the headache out of this tedious task. 

ItemAware can track your inspection, calibration, and maintenance due dates conveniently within our app. You should not have to search through piles of paperwork in hopes of reminding yourself of when your equipment was last serviced. ItemAware allows you to setup service alerts that will automatically remind you of critical due dates. How much time and stress would you save by eliminating the need to recall maintenance records?

Inspection, maintenance, and calibration are critical, and compliance is non-negotiable. Worker compensation settlements are both costly and time consuming. Your cost of doing business should not include an expensive settlement. Keep your workers safe and protect your bottom line by using our software to stay up to date on all your important maintenance and compliance needs. 

Investing in ItemAware allows you to extend the durability and lifespan of your tools while making certain that your team always has the equipment they need to get the job done right the first time. We are confident that you will see the benefits of using our robust software for years to come. Don’t let a mediocre product limit the amount of business you can take on. Instead, invest in ItemAware so that you can confidently take on new business without the worry of broken or misplaced tools

Don’t Let Human Error Be What You Are Counting On.

Whether or not you realize it, you are relying on something. If you aren’t proactive about your asset tracking and item management solution, then what you are likely counting on is human error. 

Manual tracking and updating item information is both time-consuming and prone to mistakes, resulting in lost time, effort, and money. ItemAware changes that story by automating the process. 

One of our clients reiterates this concept by saying, “[w]ith automated asset tracking and management, we can spend less time thinking about where things are and more time planning for future requirements.” – Tom King PMP, Office of Administrative Services, US Patent & Trademark Office.

Did you know the utility industry estimates a 30% annual loss rate of tools: i.e., upwards of $900,000,000 “lost” items annually? If you know what inventory you have then you can better keep track of items when they are misplaced. ItemAware allows your assets to be fully traceable – meaning that our technology will keep a history of the item’s current and last known locations. Don’t replace items that aren’t truly lost simply because you don’t have a platform to track your assets’ location. 

We Are Here to Help.

The lifecycle of an asset can be extended if you have the appropriate technology in place. ItemAware is the exact software you have been looking for to save wasted effort, time, and money spent on unnecessarily replacing equipment prematurely. Our team of experts can help tailor our cutting-edge product to meet your needs while giving you the flexibility to grow with future business. 

We are here to help you. Get started today by requesting a free 30-minute demo with one of our knowledgeable representatives.

About the Author

Jessica Frye is an expert content writer with 7+ years of professional writing experience. She earned her B.A. in Communication Studies from Wright State University and has worked alongside companies in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Jessica is passionate about community and enjoys using the power of words to not only cause people to react but to take initiative.

ItemAware Software

Our Customers Say It Best: How ItemAware Has Transformed Concurrent’s Asset Tracking Processes

To provide more customers with new and innovative solutions, Aware Innovations has partnered with Ring Power Utility Equipment to offer a groundbreaking product known as ItemAware to increase compliance and productivity while reducing losses. Read more below to learn more about this partnership.

Testimonials speak volumes. At Aware Innovations, we are always excited to share how our innovative software has revolutionized the asset tracking and inventory management fields. Although you have heard about how our modern technology can transform your tool tracking processes from us, we want you to hear it from a client’s perspective. For this reason, we are dedicating this month’s blog post to highlighting a customer’s experience using ItemAware.

To begin, we will briefly define what ItemAware is as well as outline the benefits of implementing this cutting-edge technology. Once a clear understanding of product features has been established, we will share an insider’s experience using our intuitive software.

Continue reading to learn about ItemAware’s uses as well as how our asset tracking software has greatly impacted Concurrent’s bottom line.

What is ItemAware?

ItemAware is a unique tool and asset tracking system that uses RFID and other technologies to tag tools or other items and pair them with a beacon location (truck, shed, jobsite, etc.). The ItemAware app is then used to see each item’s location and last-seen status in real time. Clicking on individual items gives the user a detailed history of the item including locations, manufacturer and more.

See the graphic below to view exactly how assets are tracked within ItemAware’s app.

ItemAware prioritizes precision. Tools located just outside a truck or on a job site will not be listed as being on the truck. The ability to know the exact location of equipment cuts down on time spent looking for tools as well as the cost of replacing tools that aren’t actually lost.

Compliance isn’t an area you want to overlook. Failure to remain OSHA compliant can result in significant financial penalties as well as unwanted legal issues for your company. Prevent these fines by allowing ItemAware to aid in keeping safety-related gear current with inspections – an important aspect of compliance in the utility industry.

Accounting for items regularly helps prevent loss while simultaneously allowing for smoother transitions between shifts. With ItemAware, we give you the power and visibility to make intelligent decisions by providing improved process, supply chain and asset visibility through innovative and modern solutions. This enables automated data collection, analysis, and notification – subsequently giving you the flexibility and knowledge required to make informed business decisions.

Ring Power Utility Equipment and Their Relationship with Concurrent Group

Ring Power Utility Equipment is a proud dealer for Terex Utilities along with other premier manufacturers of utility equipment such as Patriot Equipment, Spiradrill, Vac-Con, Brooks Brothers, Palfinger, Skylift, Prinoth, Manitex and National Crane. Ring Power also offers full parts and service on all makes and models of utility equipment, as well as a full range of utility industry tools. Ring Power Utility Equipment’s mission statement is, “[t]o provide innovative solutions at the highest standard through honest and professional relationships.”

Ring Power Utility Equipment began a pilot program last year with South Florida utility contractor, Concurrent Group.

Concurrent’s Experience with ItemAware

Did you know that tool loss in the utility industry is estimated at 30% annually, a value of approximately $900,000,000? Since adopting the ItemAware technology, Concurrent has seen a marked decrease in lost tool assets. Our intuitive software has helped Concurrent reduce asset bleed by giving their fleet managers more control and visibility of tools and equipment in real time.

See the graphic below to view the manager’s screen in the ItemAware app.

A representative from Concurrent Group described just how ItemAware has revolutionized the company’s ability to track essential tools and equipment.

“As they move around from truck to truck, we’re able to hold those accountable that had borrowed a tool, but also reduce the amount of tools that we’re replacing,” said Steve Sarno, VP Power Delivery and Principle at Concurrent Group, “This was the first system that worked.”

Steve Sarno also went on to say, “After implementing the system [ItemAware], I found $175,000 of duplicate tools.” This huge cost savings has not only allowed Concurrent Group to protect their bottom line but has also given them the ability to focus on their most profitable goals.

With the success of the pilot program at Concurrent, Aware Innovations and Ring Power Utility Equipment have begun pilot program discussions with two other major utility contractors in the state of Florida.

Mike Beauregard, Senior Vice President and Director of Utilities, Crane and Truck at Ring Power Corporation, describes ItemAware as “technology [that] far surpasses anything major that has come to the industry in a while.”

Concurrent further noted the ease of software installation. Because we know that you don’t have time to waste waiting, our team of qualified professionals work around the clock to ensure that you have the software in place when you need it most.

Click here to watch a short video that further highlights Concurrent’s seamless experience both implementing and actively using ItemAware.

ItemAware – Never Lose Track of Your Assets Again

This success story is just one of many that prove the value of our asset tracking and inventory management system, ItemAware.

At Aware Innovations, we believe in delivering a product that not only works well but also far exceeds the capabilities of other software products on the market. Our modern, intuitive software allows you to predict issues, reduce theft and flag items that need repair before they interrupt your work cycle. Think of the time you would save if you could eliminate the need for manual asset tracking.

We are here to help you. Get started today by requesting a free 30-minute demo with one of our knowledgeable representatives.

About the Author

Jessica Frye is an expert content writer with 7+ years of professional writing experience. She earned her B.A. in Communication Studies from Wright State University and has worked alongside companies in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Jessica is passionate about community and enjoys using the power of words to not only cause people to react but to take initiative.


RFID – What You Need To Know

RFID, or Radio Frequency Identification, is a technology we’re sure you’ve heard of by now. After all, it’s ability to track item location and data provide endless benefits:

  • Increased supply chain efficiency
  • Reduced human errors in inventory
  • Eliminated cost of replacing lost or stolen items
  • Elevated security
  • And more….

It has numerous applications:

Companies and organizations have increasingly adopted this technology for the above benefits, and have additionally realized the advantage it provides in reacting to unforeseen events such as COVID-19. Subsequently, using RFID or another tracking technology is essential to remaining competitive in today’s market.

But where do you start?

We’ve been in the industry a long time and provide a basic overview of RFID below so that you can begin your journey towards efficiency, lower operation costs, security and more. To see how RFID compares to other tracking technologies, see this article.

Radio Frequency Types

RFID functions on radio wave frequencies, which are measured within frequency bands: low frequency, high frequency, ultra-high frequency (such as RAIN RFID) and super-high frequency.  These terms refer to the wavelengths of the frequency – low frequency has longer wavelengths, which increase and shorten as the frequency gets higher.

Frequencies determine the strength and distance of the signal. Low frequency usually has a weaker signal and a shorter read distance but is less affected by disruptors to radio frequencies (such as liquid or metals). This is important for environments that may require RFID tags to interact with these substances. Higher frequencies promise a stronger signal and one that reads at a farther distance but is more sensitive to disruption from various materials1.

This table compares frequency bands and the technology used in each one:

Chart comparing different real-time locating system technology.

Predominant RFID

Within the world of RFID material handling there are two predominate technologies used; HF and UHF.  UHF is the most predominate of the two due to its long-read ranges.  HF is used when short read ranges are desirable (such as use cases requiring isolation) or when the laws of physics prohibit the use of UHF (such as tracking of items that contain large quantities of water).

For this article, we will focus on the UHF frequency band.

RFID System Components

RFID systems are always comprised of two primary components: a transponder (tag/label) that goes on the item being tracked and the interrogator (reader). These components work together to store data about an item’s location, transmit that data and ultimately distill that data into usable information via a software application. Software apps, such as ItemAware, allow users to look up an item, see its location, and add additional data about the item (such as maintenance information, item history and much more).


Components of RFID System

RFID Tags: Passive, Semi-Active, Active

RFID tags are placed on every item that is going to be tracked. Different types and sizes of RFID tags determine versatility for different environments, infrastructures, and cost thresholds. A main distinction between tags is the method by which power is supplied to them – determining if they are passive or active.

First, let’s break down the types of RFID tags and how they work:

Passive RFID Tags are the simplest RFID tag, only containing an integrated circuit and an antenna. They do not transmit signals to readers, but rather engage when a reader sends a signal to the antenna. This is done through backscatter technology – without signals from the reader, the tag remains inactive. If the tag is located outside the reader’s range, the tag won’t have sufficient energy to send information to the reader. Because the tag does not contain a battery, they last indefinitely.

Semi-Active RFID Tags (also called semi-passive or battery-assisted passive (BAP) tags) communicate the same way that passive tags do – by receiving a signal from the reader. However, the semi-active tag circuitry is powered by a battery. The battery enables a longer read range than passive tags, but not as long as an active tag.

Active RFID Tags have their own energy supply, e.g. a battery or a solar cell, which is used to provide power to the chip and generate the RF signal for transmitting data to the reader.  Given that the strong electromagnetic field needed to power a passive tag is not necessary, the distance from the tag to reader can be significantly increased, yielding an increased coverage area for each reader. The battery typically lasts around 2-5 years before being replaced. Active tags can offer a longer read range – up to 1000ft / 304m – and are often used on items that need to be tracked over long distances.

Tags can be used on multiple items throughout their existence.

Tag Cost

The price of RFID tags considers the durability, frequency, volume of tags needed, etc. This means that there is not a straightforward price to share for each tag; however, passive tags are less costly than semi-active and active tags, and prices generally fall in these ranges (NOTE: prices do change based on the market, inflation, demand, etc.):

  • Active: Active RFID tags start around $25 / tag upwards of $100 tag.
  • Semi-Active: usually cost around $10-$25 per tag.
  • Passive: Passive RFID tags cost anywhere from $0.07 to $0.50 each

It is often assumed that passive RFID is the cheapest option on the market – and, when looking at tag price alone, this is true – but there are many factors that go into a final cost. Which means that what makes up your cheapest option depends on your requirements and the factors we continue to explore in the rest of this article.

Tag Sizes and Types

RFID tags come in a wide range of sizes. Active tags are generally larger because they have more components, while passive RFID tags can be as small as a grain of rice.2 Our engineers are continually engineering solutions that allow tags to affix to items properly so that they do not obstruct function and avoid being destroyed when an item is used. A recent example includes inserting a tag into a divot on a chainsaw for tool tracking, so that the chainsaw is tracked without risking damage to the tag during use. Another example is tamper-evident tags that are placed on weapons boxes. If the box is tampered with, the tag alerts users (like a security officer), increasing security and minimizing theft.

Since use cases are broad and tag options are numerous, it is best to talk to a professional to determine which tag is right for your situation.

Chart comparing RFID Tags

RFID Readers

Readers are essential for the RFID system as they send signals to tags and collect tag data. They fall into two main categories: fixed and mobile.

Fixed readers allow users to track items as they pass through chokepoints (such as entryways, stairwells, etc.). When an item passes through a chokepoint, the data is collected by the reader and communicates to the user that the item has moved from one location to the next. Fixed readers are the most expensive category of readers, but they also have the highest read range. A subset of fixed readers is an integrated reader which is often used in visible areas of indoor locations, because of its sleeker design.3

Mobile readers come in a variety of forms from a Mobile Computing Device that has an onboard computer, to a Sled that can fit on a person’s mobile phone and transfer data through Bluetooth or auxiliary connection. Users walk through inventory and scan to read the tags in that location with handheld readers. These readers are usually more cost-effective than fixed readers and are especially effective when searching for a specific item in an exact location.3 Once again, the right reader is determined by use case.



An Integrated Fixed Reader: the Impinj Speedway xPortal R640 Reader used at the US Patent and Trademark Office


Zebra MC3300 RFID Series Mobile Computer

RFID Antennas

Antennas are another essential component of an RFID system, as they create the communication between the reader and the tag. Antennas are placed on both the reader (to send the signal to the tags) and on the tags that receive the signal (in turn transmitting the information that the chip is storing).

The signal strength between a tag and reader can be determined by the antennas, their size, polarity, and the degree of wave expansion as it leaves the antenna.4

Times-7 A5020 RAIN RFID Antennas offer the high performance and range needed for high traffic tracking with precision. 


SummaryThere are numerous reasons that go into choosing a technology that’s right for your needs: how a technology interacts with its environment, the current infrastructure, costs associated, if you need constant monitoring of an item, the value of the items you’re tracking and much more. While research can give you an idea of what might be best for you, it’s important to speak with a professional to make sure you are getting the best possible solution, with the highest return on investment. That’s why we are a full-service asset tracking and inventory management company. We built our own software (to create the best features on the market) and we specialize in the integration of hardware and software so that you can go from “start” to “tracking” with one company. We also source all hardware for you with our hardware partners that we’ve vetted to be the best. Contact us today!


Additional Sources

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 Bart Ivy, PMP

Bart is our Director of Automated Identification Data Collection (AIDC) and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Solutions. A retired Air Force Chief Master Sergeant and certified Project Management Professional, he handles your solution design. From defining technical requirements to deploying and sustaining your system, he ensures high-quality services that satisfy your needs. Bart is an expert in the industry and works with these technologies every single day. He’s our go-to guy for information on deploying real-time locating systems.

 Elyse Cheatwood

Elyse is our Marketing Manager. With ten years in marketing and ever-increasing knowledge of the Automated Identification Data Collection (AIDC) industry, she creates research-driven content based on market trends, industry updates and tech insights from reputable sources (including the professionals she works alongside).




ItemAware News RFID Traceability

Track IT Assets Using RFID and ItemAware

The US Patent and Trademark Office needed a new way to track IT assets. The process by which this was currently being done was taking too much time and was vulnerable to error. Read on to find out how implementing ItemAware and the use of passive UHF RFID helped them save $1.2M each year. 

Tom King, PMP, and the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) won RFID Journal’s ‘Best Implementation of RFID in Other Industries’ Award in 2020. The USPTO wanted to reduce the cost of a manual process of tracking IT assets. This labor-intensive tracking process was subject to error due to the almost 1,000 people involved in tracking IT assets worth over $159,000,000. 

A New Way to Track IT Assets: Project Details 

To achieve the desired results of this project, the USPTO implemented ItemAware and the use of passive UHF RFID (RAIN) to track over 130,000 IT assets. Below are details of the project as outlined in the interview recorded by RFID Journal’s Mark Roberti. 

The United States Patent and Trademark Office has:

  • 15,000 employees
  • 8 buildings
  • Approximately 2.5 million square feet of office space
  • One main campus: Alexandria, VA
  • Four regional offices: Detroit, Denver, Dallas, San Jose

The goals of this project were as follows:

  • Reduce the number of employees tracking IT assets
  • Reduce inventory cycle time
  • Increase accuracy
  • Increase asset visibility
  • Reduce asset loss

Requirements of the project included: 

  • Minimally invasive
  • Cost effective
  • Integrate with current asset system of record

Results of using RFID and ItemAware to track IT assets:

  • $1.2M annual savings
  • Reduced Property Custodians from 804 to 275 (employees were able to get back to their real job, increasing satisfaction)
  • Reduced inventory cycle time from 10 to 5 business days each month
  • Accuracy increased 100% due to data from RFID
  • Increased asset visibility and better monitoring of contractor performance
  • Reduced asset loss to near zero

Conclusion – Track IT Assets Using RFID to Save Time and Money

Watch the video below as RFID Journal’s Mark Roberti interviews Tom King from the USPTO office about how they save over $1,000,000 every year using RFID to track IT assets. 

Read the use case on this project to get more in-depth details on how the USPTO uses ItemAware to track IT assets.

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