A study sponsored by Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and conducted by the University of Arkansas' Walton College research faculty, found that the use of RFID (radio frequency identification) technology reduced out-of-stocks by 26% on retail shelves.

Preliminary results also found:

  • The test stores outperformed control stores by 63%.

  • RFID-tagged items in test stores outperformed non-tagged items within those same stores by three-fold.

    “The interest in and subsequent use of passive RFID in the retail supply chain has been growing rapidly in the past few years,” said Bill Hardgrave, executive director, Information Technology Research Institute. “What is the business case for the use of RFID in the supply chain? A potential area for improvement is in the in-stock position of products on the shelf. A reduction in out of stocks provides benefit for the retailer, the supplier and the consumer.”