Tag Department Stores RFID Ready
The recent announcement that J.C. Penney is planning to go to mobile checkouts by the end of next year is just the latest sign that radio frequency identification (RFID) technology is driving change in the department store channel.
In a recent interview with Fortune, Penney CEO Ron Johnson said the department store was going "100 hundred percent RFID with ticketing. … Now most people use RFID for internal operations inventory management. We’re going to jump right to the customer, and my goal in 2013, by the end of 2013 is to eliminate the cash route."
Penney is not the only department store heavily invested in RFID. Macy’s Inc. has announced it will go to item-level tagging in its namesake and Bloomingdale’s chains by the end of this year. The company expects to achieve 97 percent inventory accuracy on tagged items. Initial plans called for Macy’s to tag "items automatically resupplied as they are sold to customers." These items represent roughly 30 percent of the company’s sales.
- Transcript: JC Penney CEO Ron Johnson – Fortune
- J.C. Penney CEO Predicts RFID Will Help Create a Transformational Shopping Experience – RFID Journal
- Macy’s Inc. Fact Book – Macy’s Inc.
- Macy’s Wins with Technology – Forbes
- Macy’s Moves to Item-Level Tracking Using RFID – RetailWire
Discussion Questions: Is RFID item-level tracking ready for prime time in department stores? In your opinion, what retailer(s), either in or outside the department store channel, is deploying RFID in the most significant way?