RFID: ROC IT Solutions partners with Zebra Technologies
July 05, 2011 - MMH Editorial
ROC IT Solutions, supplier of software that enables track and trace in the pharmaceutical supply chain, has joined Zebra Technologies’ Independent Software Vendor (ISV) Partner Program. The partnership gives ROC IT Solutions enhanced support in using Zebra barcode printers and RFID encoders in ROC IT solution development and deployment.
“We are impressed by ROC IT Solutions’ technology and the proven benefits they’ve delivered to major pharmaceutical manufacturers and retailers implementing item-level serialization in the supply chain,” said Dan Mouhot, director of the global ISV Partner Program at Zebra Technologies. “We’re pleased to have an innovative company like ROC IT Solutions as our partner in this important and fast-growing market for Zebra.”
ROC IT software enables data capture and distributed processing of serialized product information “at the edges” of the supply chain, where materials handling takes place, such as distribution center portals and dock doors. Zebra’s hardware, when managed by ROC IT software, enables on-the-fly 1D and 2D label printing and RFID encoding at these same “edge” locations, speeding serialized products through the supply chain without bottlenecks or delays.
ROC IT has deployed its solutions using Zebra printers at a number of major installations for global pharmaceutical manufacturers and retailers. Applications include:
—Track and Trace: On-site label redressing at distribution centers, using ROC IT software to commission item-level serial numbers and Zebra printers to create individual 1D and 2D barcode labels.
—Aggregation: Creating and encoding RFID tags to identify cases, overpack units and pallets as they are assembled at a distribution center or warehouse.
—Asset management: Encoding replacement RFID tags for distribution center reusable assets, such as carts and dollies, when the existing tags fail.
ROC IT supports Zebra’s desktop model printers as well as mobile devices such as the Zebra RP4T, which enables RFID encoding at remote locations.
“Zebra’s mobile printers and tag encoders are very exciting tools for streamlining serialization processes in the pharmaceutical supply chain,” said Larry Hall, vice president of sales and operations at ROC IT Solutions. “For example, a worker in a remote area of a distribution center can consolidate pallets, use ROC IT solutions to commission a serial number for the new pallet, and create the new serialized tag right there – without the need to walk back to a central printer location.”
This not only saves time, but removes a major potential source of errors – such as mistakes in transcribing the data to be carried to the printer, or failing to walk the label back to the correct pallet in a timely manner. The Zebra printer also prints human-readable information on the tag.
“The ROC IT Solutions approach is to standardize on high-quality hardware platforms that are well-respected in the marketplace – and for label printing and RFID encoding, that’s Zebra Technologies,” Hall said. “We visit dozens of pharmaceutical supply chain operations every year in our business, and almost every one is using Zebra hardware. It’s a natural fit.”
ROC IT Solutions has also standardized on Motorola devices for data capture, and is a member of the Motorola Enterprise Mobility Solutions ISV partner program.