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This thesis was originally submitted as McCathie, L, The advantages and disadvantages of barcodes and radio frequency identification in supply chain management, Bachelor of Information and Communication Technology (Honours), University of Wollongong, 2004, 123p.


Since the 1980s, barcodes have become the backbone of supply chain management (SCM). Recently organisations, from both government and corporate sectors have placed increasing emphasis on further streamlining SCM to deliver cost savings. This has lead to a number of leading organisations introducing mandates for their suppliers to implement radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. Many organisations are unsure which technology, barcodes or RFID offers them the best return. This thesis will aid stakeholders in understanding the advantages and disadvantages of each respective technology in SCM applications. Furthermore, the research will examine the importance of a global standard for RFID such as the Electronic Product Code (EPC) and offer insight into the coexistence of barcodes and RFID. The research will employ a thorough documentation review as well as several interviews with users of each technology.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.