Why Quality Drives Us – and Serves You
This fall, Tageos successfully passed the ARC quality requirements for the design and manufacture of RFID inlays for the third time in a row. This is a perfect occasion to take a closer look at the ARC program and to shed light on its specific customer benefits.
Staying on top is harder than getting there: That's something many champions have had to learn – and something Tageos has taken to heart since it underwent the ARC certification process for the first time in 2020. At that time, the French RFID powerhouse was among the first few companies to receive ARC Quality Certification, preceded by a very detailed assessment of its sites and evaluation of its production processes. A high degree of quality awareness in manufacturing and testing processes are just some of the things that are of particular importance in order to achieve this recognition. Tageos, however, made the most of the intervening time to not only maintain the quality of its processes, but to continuously improve them.
“We are honored and pleased to have our ARC Quality Certification renewed. It is a positive and welcome challenge to comply with the criteria that the Auburn University RFID Lab defines, as it fosters a very healthy industry and at the same time, ensures high-level requirements and standards. In particular, it encourages us to never waver in our quest for optimum quality,” said Laurent Delaby, COO at Tageos.
Understanding the ARC program
For Auburn University RFID Lab, ARC Quality Certification is a complement and enhancement of its system of ARC Specifications. These ARC Specs – of which more than 20 are currently listed on the RFID Lab’s web page – define use case- or application-dependent performance standards for specific RFID products. Being listed by ARC under a Spec validates the suitability of an RFID inlay and is hence often considered an “ARC Product Specification,” although Auburn University RFID Lab itself does not use that term. The total number of RFID inlay models that meet one or more ARC Specifications is likely to be well in the four-digit range – with Tageos alone offering more than 300 “ARC Spec compliant” inlays.
In other words, ARC Specs are related to the performance characteristics of an inlay model. Strictly speaking, they are about the performance characteristics of samples of the inlay model in question – which of course allows conclusions to be drawn about the performance of the related inlay model in volume production.
ARC Specs vs. ARC Quality Certification
Hence, ARC Specs confirm that an inlay model can provide certain performance characteristics in defined application areas. In contrast, ARC Quality Certification confirms that an RFID inlay and tag manufacturer can consistently make multi-million units of an inlay model that will deliver the performance defined by the ARC Spec.
So, you could well argue that the ARC Specs tell the potential user which inlays are suitable for a use case – and that ARC Quality Certification tells users which manufacturer can most reliably supply technically suitable inlays of the required quality.
What does RFID quality mean?
Ultimately, and across all use cases and applications, customers purchase and use Tageos RFID inlays and tags to obtain data. ARC Quality Certification assures that Tageos will produce robust and reliable products, with repeatable high performance at mass scale. These “trustworthy” RFID inlays and tags will deliver “proper” data within their systems – maximizing the return on RFID investments.
At a glance: ARC Quality Certification at Tageos
Auburn University's RFID Lab requires manufacturers to implement an effective Quality Management System (QMS) that covers all critical aspects of RFID tag design and manufacturing. Strictly audited by the ARC Quality Certification program, Tageos has hence established a strong QMS process that ensures optimum product quality through:
- strict control over raw material supply;
- validation of high-quality design and NPDI (New Product Development and Introduction) processes; and
- tight quality control mechanisms within the entire manufacturing process.