How Does Asset Tracking Work?

Apr 29, 2021 | Banking & Finance, Healthcare, Hospitality, IoT Changes, IoT Vendors

IoT asset tracking software allows organisations to manage equipment and resource inventories through the internet. The digital nature of this technology allows for real-time tracking, automation, and data collection of assets. These benefits give businesses the power to optimise their logistics and thereby improve efficiencies.

In most industries, optimising asset management while mitigating risks is key to staying competitive. Because of the demand for maximum efficiency, IoT use is rapidly growing. By 2027, it’s estimated that there will be over 267 million asset trackers in use within industrial applications worldwide.

Many businesses and organisations are currently starting to take advantage of IoT asset tracking technologies to improve their operations. However, it is important to first understand the nature of the fundamentals of this technology and how it can benefit your particular field of business.

What is IoT Asset Tracking?

IoT asset tracking is an automated asset management system designed to optimise a business or organisation’s workflow. By attaching sensors to assets, organisations are streamlining the day-to-day logistical burden of managing physical assets, and they are free to re-allocate these otherwise appropriated resources towards more productive means.

The technology revolutionises the error-prone manual processes. Instead of keeping sign-in/sign-out logs or equipment storage records, the system tracks each piece of equipment by logging its location, ownership, and even its movement through the site.

There are two main components to IoT asset tracking:

  1. Asset tracking
  2. Internet of Things (IoT)

Asset Tracking

Businesses have been using asset tracking systems to manage inventories of important resources since time immemorial. In a contemporary context, resources typically tracked include equipment such as vehicles, tools & equipment, and even people. Using these systems allows businesses to monitor, manage, and distribute their assets as effectively as possible.

IoT asset tracking software improves inventory management quality by allowing organisations to track their assets in real-time using an online centralised system. By attaching antennas or wireless/cellular tags to equipment, businesses gain increased control and insight into how and where their assets are being used.

Internet of Things (IoT)

The Internet of Things is an online network of assets connected to the internet via antenna or tags. IoT tracking software gives businesses the power to automate time-consuming manual work while collecting data about performance and workflows. This data can then be used to manage and optimise logistic activities.

Traditional asset tracking is done with pen and paper. Supervisors log equipment in and out and take note of their whereabouts. This can become cumbersome when a business has a large number of assets and no way to know exactly where they are in real-time. This often leads to inefficiencies such as theft and unintended depreciation. The IoT component of IoT Asset tracking takes the data that is and can trigger actions like alerts or Return To Base (RTB) commands, reducing human effort in the monitoring and subsequent remediation of anomalies in asset behaviours.

What Industries Benefit Most From IoT Asset Tracking?

Manufacturing

Manufacturing companies can make use of key IoT technologies to help organise, track, and locate equipment, regardless of fleet size, location, or operational complexity. Aside from saving countless man-hours, this also discourages theft.

Logistic companies employing IoT asset tracking also enjoy similar benefits by using the technology to oversee cargo location and even optimise delivery times.

Manufacturing Asset Tracking IoT
Manufacturing businesses are good candidates for IoT asset tracking due to the large numbers of parts and equipment they manage.

Hospitality

Hotels, resorts, and other hospitality businesses have a large number of assets to track. By using IoT asset tracking, laptops, tablets, and even expensive sanitation equipment can be monitored. The data provided by the system can then be used to optimise workflow.

Healthcare

The healthcare industry enjoys important benefits when using IoT asset tracking software. Hospitals can use IoT tracking to reduce wait times and improve their quality of care.

For example, inventory supervisors using IoT software will always know who is using a piece of equipment and where. Then, they can use this data to coordinate inventories to make sure they are ready for use as soon as possible in the event of an emergency.

Law Enforcement

Law enforcement organisations can utilise industrial IoT services to track their large equipment inventories. Not only does this help them stay on top of their assets, but equipment purchased under federal grants usually comes with reporting and tracking requirements.

Additionally, sensitive assets such as narcotics and physical evidence can also be monitored by IoT asset tracking software, allowing law enforcement to keep a tight watch.

Rental Companies

There are many benefits rental companies can enjoy using IoT asset tracking. The technology allows them to monitor their assets on and off-site, ensuring that they are being used and returned properly. Additionally, this provides a real-time snapshot of their entire fleet. Critical information, such as the number of available assets and which ones are currently rented, is always updated.

Rental Car Asset Tracking IoT
Rental companies can use IoT software to keep constant tabs on their vehicles

.

Why Use IoT-based Asset Management?

The productivity of any organisation takes a big hit whenever physical assets are poorly managed. This affects the bottom line, as inefficiencies such as poor maintenance, lost man-hours, and theft costs companies hundreds of thousands of dollars.

IoT asset tracking software is used to alleviate these inefficiencies. However, it is crucial to consult organisations offering industrial IoT services before deploying your own system. It also helps to understand some of the benefits of using the technology.

Automation

IoT asset tracking removes the burden of time-consuming and error-prone manual tasks such as record keeping and inventory logging. Without automation, this often consumes an asset manager’s entire day. In an IoT asset tracking system, numerous processes do not require human intervention, such as tracking the location of the asset.

Real-Time Data Collection

Organisations have a higher level of control when they see where and how their assets are being used in real-time. The detailed logging IoT software provides businesses to generate profiles for each piece of equipment connected to the system. This can then be used for future decisions regarding maintenance and asset purchase as guided by historical data.

Workflow Support

By using the valuable business intelligence generated by IoT asset tracking software, businesses can improve their workflow support. For example, a user can immediately report a broken piece of equipment, which will trigger the system to automatically notify technicians that the item needs servicing. Similarly, by studying each asset’s historical data, technicians can anticipate potential issues before they become serious.

Conclusion

For all the benefits of using IoT asset tracking technology, these systems can be complicated and difficult to implement effectively. Comprehensive and detailed planning is essential to reap the benefits of IoT software.

CyAmast offers deep expertise and innovative solutions to organisations seeking improved asset management through IoT technology. Working with asset inventory sizes ranging from just a handful to hundreds of thousands, CyAmast delivers business intelligence for optimisation without compromising security.

If you’d like to see how CyAmast can help you improve your operational efficiencies and boost your security posture, reach out today.