Supply Chains’ Growing Need for Rugged Mobile Devices

Managing a supply chain in real time has become a necessity, and rugged mobile devices are becoming a much stronger presence thanks to their ability to help workers move goods through the supply chain. The operational visibility they provide can lead to better decision-making and more efficient order processing.

The devices used by truck drivers, retail store clerks, and the staff at warehouses must be configured properly so that those operating them can enter data easily without being held back by problems like temperature, truck vibration, or drops from forklifts.

However, half of the devices used in these settings are still consumer-grade instead of the rugged variety. This is according a survey involving 185 managers in charge of purchasing and using wireless and mobile solutions. That could explain why two thirds of companies plan to increase their investments in mobile devices like handhelds and tablets. While rugged devices might require a bigger investment up front, the lower failure rates noted throughout their lifetime will certainly pay off.

Wide Range of Uses

The Peerless Research Group survey points to a few big areas in which mobile devices will be deployed or upgraded. For example, 59 percent plan to use mobile devices for barcode scanning, while 56 percent will use them for tracking and managing inventory. Fifty-six percent will use them for packing, picking, and sorting, and the same percentage also plan to use them for shipping and receiving. Nearly 40 percent will turn to mobile devices for put-away and restocking, while 37 percent plan to use them for tagging at the item, pallet, and container level.

Some of the most important capabilities that managers are seeking for their mobile devices include dependable wireless as well as GPS, fast 4G LTE, a seamless integration with their back-end systems, and high security that protects their device, data and connection.

It’s clear that rugged mobile devices are becoming increasingly important, and today’s technologically advanced offerings are suited to a wide range of tasks and environments.

This blog post was based off of an article from Supply Chain Brain. View the original here.

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