USMC-091117-M-2787C-004 Keeping up with the necessary Automatic Identification Technology (AIT) on all your products and equipment is a lengthy and sometimes complicated process. You may find yourself struggling to maintain compliance standards, as it is extremely easy to get confused. Often, a lot of different workers from various departments participate in different stages of the IUID compliance progression, making it hard to stay on top of quality assurance with distributed responsibility. This blog post will walk you through the process so you can ensure that the implementation of military standard tracking technology goes smoothly – from start to finish.

Since a lot of people may be responsible for different functions, such as reporting, printing or labeling, the whole team is ultimately responsible for their share of compliance. Non-compliance in this area may result in rejected WAWF payments, submission of a Product Quality Deficiency Report (PQDR) by the government, rejected shipments or even corrective action that can be costly.

Obviously, the best course of action is not to become non-compliant in the first place.

First and foremost, the process must be managed electronically from start to finish. Automatic Identification Technology (AIT) is the cornerstone of data quality, and will make everything move quickly and smoothly along the targeted course. It will also help ensure accurate data and minimize rejected submissions to the IUID Registry and Wide Area Workflow (now called iRAPT).

Here are five key best practices that will ensure your success throughout the process of implementing IUID:

1. Know your obligations

To start, you must know what you are required to do when identifying products and government property to be tagged. You may be aware that the Department of Defense has mandated that all items priced over $5,000 must be uniquely marked. There are no exceptions to this rule! Read your contract to determine further specifications beyond this important one. This is the only way that you can effectively strategize and execute compliance standards going forward.

2. Make sure all labels are suitable

Remember that all labels, plates and direct part marking (DPM) will be permanent throughout the lifecycle of the product. Carefully consider its placement on the asset to keep it safe from any potential damage. Wear and tear from the environment on certain materials, such as photo etched aluminum or polyacrylic, can be particularly significant. Match the print method to each material type accordingly to gain the best result for permanency.

3. Validate each mark

Spelling and penmanship of the IUID are crucial for the validation process. If the readability of the mark is illegible, it cannot be properly validated.  In addition to the correct semantics and syntax, each mark should have machine readable symbols containing all the correct and required information. Once everything has been properly verified, the risk of getting items returned lessens.

4. Apply marks correctly

Before applying each mark, sterilize the surface of the product with an industrial cleaning solution. The date of the affixation should always be recorded for auditing purposes.

5. Report and register

When submitting IUID registry data, remember to include the name of each item, how and when it was acquired, its initial value, custody status and how it is marked. This requires precise data from multiple sources which is why IUID data management software to keep it accurate and organized is important to the process.