Ozburn-Hessey Logistics launches RFID-integrated supply chain solutions

Ozburn-Hessey Logistics (OHL) launched on July 1, 2004, a fully-integrated distribution network using radio frequency identification (RFID) at its Dallas Regional Distribution Campus in service to a major consumer products company.

Anchored by OHL's RFID Compliance Center located within that company's Dallas Regional Distribution Campus, the RFID-integrated distribution network will serve three of Wal-Mart's Distribution Centers all within 60 miles of OHL's campus. At the Compliance Center, all pallets and cases are RFID-tagged using a 64-bit Electronic Product Code (EPC), a 24-bit Object Class Code and a 36-bit Serial number operating in the UHF frequency range and are Class 1 compliant. OHL will upgrade to the Class 2 standard once available.

According to Bob Spieth, CIO of OHL, the RFID Compliance Center is networked with OHL's WMS, thereby allowing the company to offer a fully-integrated RFID solution to its customer. Order information received from OHL's WMS is loaded into the RFID system, where it is processed and tagged to cases and pallets destined for Wal-Mart's distribution centers.

"Our Dallas Compliance Center was part of our plan to be RFID-compliant by 2005," says Spieth. "Thanks to our implementation team's efforts, we were able to respond to our customer's needs earlier than planned." Wal-Mart is requiring its top 100 vendors to be RFID equipped by 2005.

Spieth says the infrastructure developed for the Dallas Compliance Center -- anchored by servers at its corporate headquarters in Nashville -- has been built to deploy RFID Compliance Centers at OHL's 16 other regional distribution campuses across the country as business requires.

OHL collaborated with International Paper's Smart Packaging business, whose support was instrumental in helping to define RFID processes and requirements, and designing and installing the RFID system .



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