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Retail, Wireless, IoT

How to Improve Food Safety with Temperature Monitoring Solution from Wincor Nixdorf

15 January, 2016
by Tel@Adm1n@a1d

Success Story ImageAs food safety concerns heighten, food retailers feel a great responsibility to ensure the safe storage, handling, transport and disposal of food. An added regulatory driving force in the industry is the much-anticipated Food Safety Modernization Act. An effective food safety management program requires well-trained staff and properly monitored equipment to reliably maintain perishable items at safe temperatures in both cooled and heated storage and service areas. The food safety system must be applied consistently across multiple stores, districts, and divisions.

In the face of increased regulation, many retailers have painstakingly taken steps to ensure manual verification and documentation of temperature-controlled containers at regular intervals. To further complicate matters, depending on the city, county, or state authorities in play in a particular store, the frequency of reporting and audit details may vary. Whatever details apply in a particular location, one thing remains constant: food safety compliance requires significant amounts of time, manpower, and paperwork.

Where many saw only the continuing problem, Wincor Nixdorf and its partners recognized temperature monitoring and food safety management systems as a solution in the making. Wincor Nixdorf is one of the world's leading providers of IT solutions and services to retail banks and the retail industry, with a special focus on business process optimization. With operations in about 130 countries and branch offices in 42 countries, Wincor Nixdorf has been a solution provider to the world's retailers for decades.

Wincor Nixdorf partnered with a major supermarket retailer to develop the Retail Site Intelligence (RSI) Temperature Monitoring Solution. This simple yet powerful solution includes the hardware and software necessary to automate the process of monitoring temperature controlled units, proactively alerting food retailers of failures in the system so that they can be addressed immediately.

Operating on ZigBee wireless infrastructure, the RSI Temperature Monitoring Solution comes complete with:

  • Wireless temperature sensors for easy installation and relocation
  • 7 – 10 year battery life
  • Washable, NSF-certified sensors for use in food handling
  • Intuitive software for easy system management
  • Automated email and SMS alerts for quick notification and response
  • Intelligent management of expected behaviors such as defrost cycles

Using the RSI Temperature Monitoring Solution, this grocery giant was able to ensure the integrity of temperature-controlled units, conveniently and consistently. Previously, employees had to regularly visit each case, which was time-consuming and inefficient. Using the RSI solution, these units are monitored 24/7 and alerts are automatically triggered when the temperature of any one unit falls outside the prescribed limits. This allows the retailer to relocate food immediately so that it is not compromised, reducing losses associated with food spoilage.

The shift to ubiquitous wireless temperature monitoring immediately leads to substantial savings in maintenance and energy efficiency. For example, whereas an ordinary multi-deck cold food display case likely has just one temperature sensor, RSI sensors are easy to install every few feet. This makes it straightforward to independently monitor individual refrigeration systems within the same case. In the past, if one section of the case had a problem with a refrigerant leak, fan malfunction, overstocked case, or a clogged vent, the issue would go undetected. The neighboring refrigeration systems in adjacent sections of the case would run longer and work harder, consuming more energy and requiring more intensive maintenance. With RSI, the same situation can be detected immediately, resulting in an electronic notification to a store or department manager, who can then diagnose the problem and issue a maintenance request or a corrective action to staff.

Aside from the obvious applications such as temperature monitoring for cold bunkers, glass door walk-ins, deli cases and heated take-out service cases, new and innovative applications were also discovered. These monitors have been deployed in server rooms to ensure that mission-critical computer and network equipment does not overheat. The solution has also been extended from food safety to pharmacies where it is used to monitor refrigerators containing temperature-sensitive medications and vaccines. The software maintains a detailed historical record of temperature monitoring and data points for easy review during audits and inspections, and at the same time makes it easy to identify and act on exceptions.

Telaid played a leading role in the first deployment of this game-changing solution. Telaid lent deployment expertise, installing systems in hundreds of stores across the country on an aggressive timeframe and during off-peak shopping hours. The supermarket retailer could not be happier and is eager to share this tool, which will improve food safety throughout the industry: a win-win for everyone.

To explore the possibilities for advancing your food safety efforts, we invite you to experience the RSI Temperature Monitoring Solution for yourself at the NRF Big Show, January 17 – 20 in New York. Visit Wincor Nixdorf and Telaid at booth #1853.


Five Post-Deployment Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

Tips of the Trade ImageWhile planning for the success of technology deployments is critically important, it is well worth the investment of time and resources to ensure that technology is being proactively managed throughout its entire life. Too often, companies fail to plan for ongoing management and maintenance of IT and LP assets, which can result in needless expense, waste and frustration.

Over the years, Telaid has worked with some of the largest Fortune 500 companies and has witnessed first hand the most common pitfalls associated with technology lifecycle management. How well does your company avoid these problems?

  • Needless overspending on repair and support – Equipment fails. It's a fact of life. Failure to plan for repairs and support is like failing to plan to pay taxes; it causes a lot more pain and expense in the end. Depot repair is associated with rush fees and exorbitant rates when demanded last-minute to repair critical equipment. Identifying and budgeting for dependable, cost effective repair resources before systems fail can save money and frustration. Identify your needs and seek resources that can address problems in a way that is suitable for your company. Prioritize mission-critical technologies and spend the extra money for on-site repair or spare-in-the-air contracts where needed. Then identify a cost effective depot repair resource for other equipment.
  • Rebuying what you already have – Multi-site businesses are constantly opening new stores, closing old ones, and acquiring new locations. Typically, existing locations are chock full of technology equipment that is perfectly functional. However, whether due to a lack of infrastructure or tracking systems to properly account for each piece of equipment, or a lack of communication between groups responsible for decommissioning stores and launching new ones, in many cases perfectly good equipment is lost, thrown out, or warehoused, losing its value. At best, perfectly good, functional technology is left to collect dust. At worst – duplicate equipment is purchased for new stores when old equipment could be used. By accounting for and managing technology equipment, multi-site businesses can save money by repurposing existing assets, maximizing their return on investments and saving on duplicate expenses.
  • Failure to properly dispose of equipment – Disposing of equipment is not as simple as it used to be. A single piece of technology can contain sensitive personal or company data, may pose environmental hazards or may have monetary value if deconstructed and disposed of properly. Having a dependable resource that can properly wipe devices and dispose of them, providing a chain of custody helps minimize potential risk and act in a sustainable way that customers appreciate.

Telaid's Lifecycle Solutions are designed to support multi-site retailers with cradle-to-grave technology maintenance and management solutions. Because we are nimble and everything we do is based on supporting business need, we custom-design lifecycle support for each individual customer. To learn more, contact us at 860-739-4461.


In-Store Analytics: The Key To Boost Bottom-Line Results

Tips of the Trade ImageWhile the retail industry continues its quest to understand just how analytics fit into retail operations and marketing, Nomi's customers are seeing the benefits every day - better service, improved customer loyalty and increased revenue. In specialty retail, big box and grocery, Nomi offers best-in-class people counting capabilities and cutting-edge wifi analytics. Nomi not only has the technology, but also the insight and support services to help retailers understand how to translate investments in analytics into action items that improve profitability.

For example, Nomi's analytic software delivers real-time notifications, alerting store managers that queue lines are building and that more registers need to be opened immediately to handle volume. The result reduces abandoned shopping carts and customer frustration that could lead shoppers to go elsewhere. On the marketing side, information about browse times and locations can trigger special personalized offers directly to the customer's phone, encouraging instant or spontaneous purchases. All of this insight translates to improved customer service, higher average sale, increased customer loyalty and ultimately, more revenue.

Telaid and Nomi have worked together for three years now, expanding the partnership each year. Originally, Nomi sent all of their equipment through Telaid's Technology Solution Center (TSC) for staging, configuration, kitting, labeling and shipment to the field. This set-up ensured that each and every piece of equipment was received on-site specifically configured for plug-and-play installation, significantly reducing deployment time and cost.

A proven, trusted provider of in-store analytics, Nomi grew quickly and began to pick-up larger and larger retail customers that required quick deployments in complex multi-site environments. Telaid was capable of handling these types of deployments on aggressive timelines and in stores nationwide. Topped off with great communication and project management, Nomi felt like Telaid could deliver to their valued customers on time and on budget.

Nomi's best-of-breed technology and consulting services coupled with Telaid's Zero Defect deployment capabilities give retailers solutions that ultimately drive increased conversion rates, better customer service and analytics that improve decision-making within their business. Find out how in-store analytics can booth your bottom line at www.nomi.com.

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