Equipment and Tool Tracking Systems: Asset Tracking for Calibration and Maintenance Management

Equipment and tool tracking for the research and manufacturing industries

Asset tracking for the research and manufacturing industries is critical. Equipment and tools used by staff must be meticulously maintained and calibrated. The accuracy of the equipment and tools is so important in this industry that the required maintenance and calibration of the items is sometimes regulated by government agencies. Detailed documentation surrounding everything from calibration gauges to part replacements must be meticulous for when audits occur.

Audit preparation and preparedness

I think everyone can agree that auditing of any capacity, however necessary, is not a particularly pleasant life experience. Those that have been through the process know how valuable it is to always stay on top of the small day-to-day tasks that make audits go smoothly. While there are tools, like Gauge Management and Calibration software and Enterprise Asset Management software, that can keep record of the who, what, where, when, and how of calibration and maintenance, the tools and equipment still need to be tracked down and retrieved by humans for this routine work to occur.

How an equipment and tool tracking system saves time and money

Often on large campuses with thousands of staff members working in hundreds of labs, across many departments, locating the asset that needs to be calibrated can take staff days to find. That could be seen as a necessary inconvenience if there was no better way, but asset tracking systems can reduce a task that is currently taking days’ worth of work down to just 10minutes of work.

Asset tracking systems are such a significant time saver in these settings because it keeps record of where a tool or piece of equipment is at any given time, which allows staff to retrieve assets for calibration or maintenance without any searching. Additionally, asset tracking software can track and document who has an asset, when that asset was in a person’s possession, where the asset traveled while it was in a person’s possession, and more. This documentation is automated and happens in real-time, at all times, and can be seamlessly integrated into any other software platform that has a Rest API—like Gauge Management and Calibration software or Enterprise Asset Management software. Seeing as documenting this extra information requires no additional costs or labor and it is helpful to have on hand for internal use and for government audit purposes, it is an added benefit of having an asset tracking system.

Equipment and tool tracking technology

The technology needed for equipment and tool tracking systems isn’t new either. RFID has been used commercially since the early 2000s and has a reputation for its reliability and ease of use. Something that is relatively new though is industry standardization of the hardware, which allows for hardware to remain compatible with other industry standard hardware of the past and future. The industry standardization of the hardware used in asset tracking systems provides users security because an asset tracking setup will last for decades without the hardware becoming obsolete or incompatible with the newest models; however, not all providers sell exclusively industry standard equipment, so make sure to check if you are setting up a new asset tracking system.

Industry standardization of asset tracking technology

The compatibility of industry standard hardware of today with generations of hardware to come is a large selling point for why the upfront investment required for an equipment and tool tracking setup is worthwhile. If an organization can allocate the budget for a tracking setup, the sooner one is installed, the more money the system can save that organization in labor costs that are currently spent on looking for tools and tedious data entry. In our experience, most of our clients see their complete break-even point in 6 months to a year, meaning the decade’s worth of lifespan of the system after that point is all savings—month after month, year after year.

Asset tracking software and IT infrastructure

The asset tracking software needed to run the systems is a minor expense when compared to the hardware and instillation of a system. Especially if the software is chosen wisely. A hidden cost to consider on the software side is IT infrastructure changes that would be needed periodically to keep systems up-to-date and functioning. Enasys was built with this point in mind. We didn’t want our platform to require specific IT infrastructure—at the first download or at 10 years down the line—so Enasys is a hosted platform. This means that if internet is available in the facility where the asset tracking takes place the software will work.

Enasys’ asset tracking experts are ready to help your team

An asset tracking system is undoubtedly an incredible resource for organizations in the research and manufacturing industry—one that could save the organization money rather than costing money. The options for customization to unique needs is practically endless. Enasys is run by experts that can guide your team every single step of the way. Get started, contact us today.

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