In a recent blog post on the Target corporate website, Keri Jones, Executive Vice President of Global Supply Chain and Operations discussed Target’s plan to start using RFID technology.
Keri explained how it was a really exciting time to be in retail, thanks to extraordinary developments in technology that have made it possible to create, build and scale new retail concepts at unprecedented speeds. It was also highlighted that not all retail technology comes to life brightly on their mobile phones and that sometimes it’s just working its magic in the background to provide people with seamless, stress-free shopping experiences.
The post stated that the Target team is developing the kinds of behind-the-scenes technologies that quietly help Target stay ahead of guests’ changing behaviors and that technologies like Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) will be rolled out in late mid to late 2015.
The RFID tags project will begin be the inserting of a “smart label” on price tags that will help Target improve our inventory accuracy and enhance Target’s ability to keep stores in stock. The shopper probably wouldn’t notice these new RFID tags on their own, but that’s the point. This unobtrusive but significant technology will increase efficiencies by providing greater visibility into Target’s inventory. That means guests will better be able to find out whether we’ve got the item at their Target store or at others nearby.
Keri also stated “expect RFID to help us better fulfill online orders placed for store pickup, which already account for 15 percent of Target.com purchases. Our RFID rollout will start in a small number of stores late this year, then expand to all Target stores in 2016. The program will include many of our key categories like Women’s, Baby and Kids’ apparel and home décor – making this one of the largest RFID projects in retail. We’re starting with these areas because guests love our style offerings and because they are some of our most popular store pickup items.”
Keri, EVP of Target’s Global Supply Chain then went on to say that Target was so passionate about the power and potential of RFID that Target is a sponsor of the RFID Lab at Auburn University.
“My team and I are thrilled about technology’s considerable role in upping Target’s operations, and in particular, bringing near-complete store inventory accuracy within reach for the first time with RFID. Because at the end of the day, the technology we use to manage the supply chain helps ensure our guests find what they’re looking for. As more and more of our guests shop us online, they expect a great, seamless experience between digital and stores. And adopting technology like RFID is one big step Target is taking to make sure we deliver.”, Keri wrote.