Managing IT Assets with RAIN RFID Improves Operations for U.S. Patent Office

With over 2.5 million square feet of office space and more than 115,000 IT assets, the USPTO has a lot to keep track of—and a lot of space to lose it in. After noticing that employees were spending roughly 7,700 hours each year inventorying IT assets, the USPTO turned to a RAIN RFID solution to reduce manual labor and reallocate hours for critical tasks. With this solution, USPTO expects:

  • A reduction of hours allocated for asset management from 7,700 to 800 or fewer
  • An increase in hours dedicated to revenue-generating tasks

The United States Patent and Trademark Office:

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is a federal agency that manages the filing and registration of patents and trademarks, and the administration of laws and regulations needed to promote progress and protect intellectual property.

Impinj Solution Partner:

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U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Cuts Manual Labor with RAIN RFID Asset Tracking Solution

The United States Patent and Trademark Office plays an important role in protecting intellectual property by examining and issuing patent and trademark registrations, and encouraging an environment where businesses can thrive.

A federal agency under the Department of Commerce, USPTO is required to submit an annual inventory of assets. But with over 1150,000 IT assets, the USPTO found that it was spending upwards of 7,700 hours a year taking inventory, rather than focusing on revenue-generating activities.

Recognizing the potential of RAIN RFID to simplify operations and recover time, the agency implemented a solution that manages assets across more than 160 floors. The Impinj and Aware Innovations solution allows assets to be tracked as they move in and out of USPTO buildings. Here’s how it works:

  • All IT assets—from iPads to AV equipment—are tagged with RAIN RFID tag chips
  • Impinj xPortal and Speedway readers placed in doorways and hallways track the movement of assets throughout multiple locations and floors, while Impinj xArray readers monitor entrances, security checkpoints, and wherever wide-area monitoring was required
  • In addition, handheld readers help verify item location each month
  • Item data is sent to USPTO’s ERP software, where management can view the location of IT assets in real time

As USPTO continues to explore the potential of RAIN RFID, it plans to expand the scope of this innovative solution, eventually tagging the assets of remote employees and tracking recently used items to improve custodial efficiency. USPTO expects to regain their $2.8 million investment in just 18 months.

Automated IT asset management allows USPTO to focus on the future

  • Automated inventory counts realign focus to goal-fulfilling tasks
    Previously, quarterly inventory counts cost USPTO roughly 7,700 hours of labor annually. By 2018, the organization expects to complete inventory assessments in under 800 hours, allowing employees to reallocate nearly 900 hours to tasks that generate revenue, sustain policy, and support a healthy business environment.
  • Always know where IT assets are
    Prior to the RAIN RFID solution, field technicians were required to manually update the location and custodian of each asset. Now, readers automatically track item location as assets move through USPTO facilities. If an asset goes missing, reliable location information makes it easy for employees to resolve the issue. To date, the automation has resulted in measurably fewer errors across the board.

Impinj (NASDAQ: PI) wirelessly connects billions of everyday items such as apparel, medical supplies, and automobile parts to consumer and business applications such as inventory management, patient safety, and asset tracking. The Impinj platform uses RAIN RFID to deliver timely information about these items to the digital world, thereby enabling the Internet of Things.

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