Organizations are faced with an ongoing need to track and protect their assets and equipment, personnel, visitors and patients in some of the most challenging environments. It might be an indoor setting or outdoor remote site, it could be a hazardous environment or one where a large number of people come and go at all times of the day.
Regardless of the situation or scenario, organizations must find a solution that gives them instant and constant visibility of their assets and people, helping them achieve greater security, compliance and efficiencies, without trading in cost and care.
When assessing the tools and systems that might work for your industrial, commercial, or healthcare organization, consider integrating a reliable, effective real-time location system (RTLS), complete with RFID tags and RFID reader solution, into your business processes and organizational workflow.
What Exactly is RTLS?
A real-time location system (RTLS) is a precise positioning system that can be used to track, protect, secure, and manage a wide variety of objects (assets, equipment, and people) in real-time within a broad range of industrial, commercial, and healthcare environments. Using constant communication between the system and the item being tracked, the enterprise is provided with immediate data on precisely where the item is, or has been.
RTLS solutions will often be developed to include single, dedicated active radio frequency identification (RFID) infrastructure that can expand and support a wide variety of applications — including real-time location and tracking, security, access control, and flow control — and withstand a range of environments and environmental conditions.
The solution includes various RFID tags that store a unique identity and can be worn by, or attached to, patients, employees, carers, visitors, materials, and equipment. In addition, the solution includes technology platforms (Wi-Fi , Infrared, etc.), hardware infrastructure (RFID readers, exciters) and other system components (servers, software). An RTLS can also be integrated into a wider business solution that could consist of site management or production planning.
RTLS solutions are often associated with asset tracking systems but they actually have far greater capabilities. Whereas an asset tracking system can track an object based on its last location (when it was last read), an RTLS system is continuously and automatically in contact with the RTLS tag and knows precisely where the tagged object is at all times, not just when it passes through a designated exit or specific area of the organization.
The Benefits of RTLS Technology
Real-time visibility of your assets
When it comes to RTLS technology, the ability to gain real-time visibility of your assets and your equipment is key.
Being able to find medical equipment in a much faster time can produce instant cost-savings for your organization, whether commercial, industrial or healthcare related. Hospital asset tracking can locate and manage precious hospital equipment, while ensuring that you’ll gain greater costs efficiencies from not having to purchase additional unnecessary equipment to cover those times when equipment cannot be found.
Whether it’s a remote construction site, an oil and gas field, assembly line, or storage facilities, RTLS systems give you the ability to protect your equipment from unauthorized removal from the premises or individual department, meaning that you can always track what comes in and what goes out at all times. What’s more, if your organization includes multiple assembly lines, then you can track the flow of items on those lines, reducing temporarily misplaced items or shortages of parts, which can cause delays, productivity losses, and money down the drain.
Protection of your people
An effective RTLS solution is ideal for protecting one of your most critical assets — your people. Backed by RFID tracking, RTLS technology allows you to locate, monitor, and ensure the safety of your people with pinpoint accuracy and regardless of range.
In an industrial or commercial environment, you need a personnel safety solution for all staff, especially for lone workers on hazardous sites. An RTLS solution can give you enterprise-wide visibility from any monitoring point and a real-time view of your tagged people throughout your facilities, with pinpoint accuracy and extreme reliability. Wearing active RFID badge-style tags, employees can call for help if, and when, a crisis or emergency situation arises, plus receive communication that help is on the way. RFID tracking systems can also deliver hands-free accounting of your personnel at all times, giving you critical real-time site demographic data when needed for mustering purposes.
In a healthcare setting, an RTLS technology solution can tell you patient locations in real-time, it can monitor the interactions between patients and caregivers, and it can let you know when a patient is discharged. An RTLS solution can provide alarms for when staff need assistance, particular in the case of violent incidents, and also for patients prone to wandering or elopement by triggering alarms at key doors and exits. By wearing active RFID tags, including those with discrete push buttons, unparalleled protection can be given to staff and patients at all times.
An ultimate solution for efficiency gains
RTLS solutions can provide greater efficiencies when it comes to knowing where your assets are and what your people are doing. Workflows can be tracked and automated, leading to improved processes and increased costs savings.
In a healthcare setting, assets can be accurately pinpointed and hospital workflow can be improved thanks to less interruptions on staff time and resources. For example, when a patient is discharged, staff can be notified that the person’s room now needs cleaning. At Stamford Hospital in the U.S., administrators saved more than $627,000 during a recent seven-month trial period of an RTLS solution, with the savings achieved from patient bed days gained through improved efficiencies.
In an industrial or commercial setting, real-time location systems will not only help you prevent theft and unauthorized movement of your valuable assets, but they can also help you track tens of thousands of assembly line items. Efficiencies can be gained by avoiding misplaced items, parts shortages, and lost productivity
What are the GuardRFID® RTLS Solutions?
GuardRFID offers highly reliable and robust RTLS solutions. Our RTLS platform is a multi-purpose, reliable, high performance enterprise platform that supports an infinite number of staff, patient, visitor, and equipment-related applications, and offers the widest selection of tags to choose from. Offering security, safety, and functionality in one complete system, it includes both long-range location and instant choke-point detection as a result of its dual frequency implementation.
The platform can be configured to be a standalone system or it can be a sub-net within the facility’s primary local network, making installation simple and cost-effective. Thanks to the IP-based nature of the system, options exist for remote monitoring, diagnostics and software updates, which makes maintenance and management of the system easy and efficient.
Because the network is fully IP-based and built upon standard hardware and software, it can be implemented using either wired Ethernet (with or without Power over Ethernet (PoE)) or using Wi-Fi connectivity.
GuardRFID offers a range of industry-specific and market-leading RTLS Solutions that include:
The GuardRFID Healthcare RTLS Solutions offer RTLS capability, portal detection, hospital asset tracking, and RFID patient tracking. The sector-specific solutions include:
An accurate, expandable real-time infant and paediatric security system, with the widest selection of tags to fit all of your facility needs.
An advanced real-time duress call system available to healthcare workers and designed to give you and your staff assurance that they can communicate and call for help at a time of crisis, eliminating critical delays when that help is needed.
An advanced RTLS and security system for real-time asset tracking, location, and loss prevention for hospitals.
An industry-leading real-time wandering patient safety system for the visibility and security of your patients, with the smallest, toughest, longest-lasting active RFID tags in the industry.
The GuardRFID Industrial RTLS Solutions offer the highest levels of security, compliance, and efficiencies thanks to our robust, multi-purpose RTLS platform and include:
Real-time tracking of your critical equipment and materials, regardless of industrial environment, equipment size, or total tag volume.
The most advanced automatic hands-free, real-time employee mustering and lone worker monitoring system.
A highly-reliable personnel monitoring system for providing precise worker visibility and perimeter and/or zonal security.
For maximum visibility when it comes to your assets, employees, and visitors, the GuardRFID Commercial RTLS Solutions include:
A market-leading RTLS Security system for tracking, locating and securing your commercial assets in real-time.
The fastest responding real-time employee mustering and lone worker monitoring system for corporate and campus environments.
An advanced expandable real-time personnel monitoring system for providing precise worker visibility and permiter and/or zonal security.
RTLS Solutions – Innovative real-time location systems that provide immediate monitoring, protection, and management of your people and assets
Whatever the organizational need, the GuardRFID RTLS Solutions integrate with more third-party systems and applications than any other RTLS offering on the market, thanks to its unparalleled standards compliance and certification.
With the widest selection of active RFID tags to choose from, our RTLS Solutions give you real-time location and portal detection in a single feature-rich system. So, what are you waiting for?