Your Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Asset Tag
For different industries, tracking assets has become an integral part of the business. From manufacturing and utility companies to healthcare, education, telecom and cable companies, and many others, asset tracking has become crucial. You can use id labels, barcode labels, RFID tags, etc. with your sturdy metal asset tags to track assets efficiently. You may even use custom asset tags to tag materials, equipment, tools, etc. to track their location or maintenance/servicing status. However, if you haven’t ordered an asset tag before, knowing where to start could be difficult. But you need not worry as this guide would help you choose the right asset tag to accomplish your objective.
When trying to choose the right asset tag, you should keep the following factors in mind.
Identifying the Assets to Tag
Your first step is to decide with clarity the objectives you want to accomplish. For this, you should identify the assets you want to tag. For instance, most companies use asset tags to track their movable assets. If you want to join the league, you’ll need to identify the assets that your metal asset tags should track. Depending on your industry, these could be machines, diagnostic equipment, furniture, poles and cables, laboratory equipment, etc. However, you may also choose to track some of your fixed assets for improved inventory control. Such assets may include database servers, HVAC equipment, manufacturing conveyor belts, etc.
Fixed asset tracking could even help with maintenance schedules. Unexpected equipment malfunctions can cause unanticipated work interruptions, outages, or delays. In some industries, it could have an adverse impact on service delivery and customer satisfaction. But with asset tracking, you can stay abreast of warranty service contracts and schedule repairs or maintenance on time. This way, you can ensure optimal performance of your equipment and avoid sudden workflow interruptions due to breakdown or malfunction.
Once you’ve identified the assets that need to be tagged, you should establish your goals too. This could be improved asset management, loss or theft minimization, improved productivity, or enhanced profit with planning, forecasting, and reporting. Based on the type and size of your assets, you can choose the best-suited metal asset tags to use.
Choosing the Right Material for the Asset Tags
It’s crucial to consider the environment your asset tags will get exposed to. For instance, if your tags are likely to be exposed to the sunlight for long periods, choose metal asset tags. Unlike polymer-based tags that will fade or deteriorate quickly, sturdy metal asset tags are capable of withstanding sunlight much longer.
If you plan to put your tags on crates or containers that would be moved around often, use metal tags. Such tags would resist being scraped or damaged by pallet jacks, forklifts, etc.
Metal asset tags are ideal in case your assets will undergo tempering or heat processes above 300°F. Polypropylene or polyester tags would get discolored or deteriorate at such high temperatures. However, metal tags can withstand temperatures up to 750°F without breaking down or getting discolored.
Plastic tags would get affected when exposed to caustic or cleaning chemicals on a regular basis. Even common chemicals like bathroom cleaners, glass cleaners, acetone, and alcohol would damage plastic tags. But metal asset tags can withstand such chemicals and stay in readable shape, which makes them a much better investment.
You’ll need to consider if your tags would be exposed to sunlight, abrasion, high temperatures, chemicals, and other environmental factors. Based on the level of exposure they’ll have to withstand, you should choose your tag material. As mentioned above, metal asset tags score extremely well in different harsh environments. Perhaps this explains their rising popularity across industries.
Sometimes, the surface on which you’ll place your tag is also important to think about. For instance, a curved surface would need an asset tag that’s thin and has more flexibility. Since metal asset tags can be made of varying thicknesses (0.3 to 3.0 mm), they can be custom-made for such surfaces.
Lastly, how you plan to use your tags is crucial when choosing the material for such tags. For instance, some metal asset tags may not work well with RFID and could impact the readability. However, you can choose custom asset tags created by an experienced manufacturer to tide over this problem.
Choosing the Right Technology If Needed
If you need corrosion-resistant asset tags, you could choose aluminum, which is strong and meets unique industrial requirements. You may even choose metal asset tags made of anodized aluminum, especially if you want these tags for personal use.
If you need custom asset tags, you may choose the ones made of stainless steel whose surface has been sandblasted. Such asset tags are strong, resistant to corrosion, and even have a nice metal feeling to them. Thanks to the mirror effect of stainless steel, these tags even come equipped with a beautiful look. However, if you aren’t sure which technology is suitable for your asset tags, what should you do? The answer is simple – trust your expert manufacturer to decide it on your behalf.
Letting a Professional Handle the Asset Tagging Process
Your asset tags contain readable information embedded in them. Such information could be as simple as the name or logo of your company along with a serial number. Else, it could be complex like RFID tags, QR codes, etc. Whatever information your tags should have, you need to let a professional handle the process. This way, your asset tags would have unique identifiers and no confusion would arise due to the tags being similar. Additionally, a professional would ensure your metal asset tags are readable and scannable, thus helping you with efficient asset management.