Among the 155,000 Verizon employees, the service tech team is responsible for residential requests, including service repairs and product installations. Each technician is assigned a vehicle equipped with the tools and equipment for most routine service calls based on past trends and best guesses rather than the current needs. Verizon has over 7,000 vehicles loaded with over $300,000 of equipment. Throughout the course of a typical workday of installations, if a service technician runs out of inventory, they return to the warehouse, restock the vehicle, and delay the remaining service calls scheduled for the day. Limited visibility into inventory levels created several challenges for Verizon, including delays in the workday productions, inadequately stocking vehicles, and long & inaccurate cycle counts. Verizon was forced to overspend on inventory, and over-allocate resources for long cycle counts to account for this.
Inventory tracking in Verizon retail shops had many of the same problems as tracking inventory in the field. Without complete visibility into stocked items in each retail location, Verizon could not provide real-time analytics of what products were selling, had low inventory, and which items were collecting dust and would be better used in another location. Again, this challenge resulted in revenue loss, missed or delayed promotion opportunities, over or under stocking, misinformed spending patterns, and more.
With a known issue in the lack of inventory visibility, increasing shrinkage trends began to rise, resulting in a substantial hit to revenue.
Implementing an automated inventory management system with RFID technology and Apptricity’s IoT-connected I-Connect Controller gave Verizon the tools they needed to cut overspending and reduce hours spent in cycle counting. Before the implementation, Verizon cycle-counts would span multiple days and be subject to manual, error-prone methods. After implementing the Apptricity system, Verizon experienced a 40% reduction in cycle-counting time and achieved total visibility into stock numbers. This visibility allowed Verizon to locate their inventory and count it accurately, drastically cutting the overstocking level that took place and reducing the time spent during a cycle count, along with the resources required.
With the Apptricity I-Connect Controller installed in nearly 4,000 trucks, Verizon gained unprecedented visibility into their trucks’ location and the items inside. Verizon installed a smaller I-Connect unit on the retail side to scan all RFID-tagged inventory at a location. This information helped inform smarter purchasing strategies, restocking items that were selling quickly, and ordering fewer items that were not. With all this data collected, Apptricity integrated with Verizon’s SAP system, allowing for real-time data updates to keep SAP current with the newest scans.
Verizon is one of the world’s largest wireless providers, servicing the most subscribers of any US-based telecommunications company. They ranked 16th on the most recent Fortune 500 list and remained on there for 24 years, cementing themselves as a world leader in wireless communications. According to Fortune.com, Verizon posted over $126 billion in revenue and saw its profits rise 129% from 2017 to 2018. The Verizon markets include Cable Television, Fixed Line, Mobile, Broadband, Digital Media, Internet of Things, and Telematics.