soldiers-1002_640With the emergence of Item Unique Identification, IUID, confusions regarding implementation have grounded.

Implementing IUID and being compliant with government restrictions begins with your contract. The Department of Defense has determined that it is imperative that items valued at or above $5,000 be marked with UID. Take a look at your items and first determine which items you have to mark, and then what items you should mark. All items should be identified as end, property or legacy items.

The following are pitfalls to avoid when implementing IUID:


1.     Implementing IUID as a ‘stovepipe’. IUID data and information needs to support every stage of tracking. Stove piping IUID decreases the value and ROI of assets. IUID compliance and automatic identification need to be included in:

  • Creation
  • Printing
  • Validation
  • Verification
  • Application
  • Registration and WAWF
  • Tracking and tracing

2.     Choosing a label that doesn’t meet the needs of the environment or MIL STD 130. Item labels need to be permanent throughout the product’s life cycle and be difficult to damage or destroy while in use. It is also important to choose the right label for a material. For instance, you should not create a polyester label for engines, vehicles or weapons. 

Labels also need to be validated. Ensure that the label contains the correct and required information such as semantics and syntax. Use a scanner or imager that is capable of reading IUID 2D Data Matrices.

3.     Failing to address all of the data capture quality needs when placing the barcode on the asset. As mentioned above, the label has to be permanent. To ensure it stays on the item, place it on a surface cleaned with industrial solution. Also, know where to affix the label.

There are some instances you must think about when creating and placing the label:

  1. Will this label be removed of rebuilt because of item modification?
  2. Can the label be placed or is there a lack of space due to “bag and tag.”

 4. Ignoring the reporting and registration requirements until the end of the process. To keep up with DoD requirements, maintain and transfer data electronically. This ensures accurate data and minimizes rejected submissions. The consequences of not reporting requirements can be expansive.

  • Expensive corrective action
  • Rejected WAWF payments
  • Government submission of a Product Quality Deficiency Report
  • Rejected shipment of non-conforming 2D Data Matrix codes.

5. Implementing IUID but failing to take advantage of the benefits. Implementing IUID ensures data accuracy from the data. Accurate data saves record time and verifies quicker payments. Additionally, it gives users total asset visibility and improved ROI. The following are some best practices for IUID:

  • Read your contract before you execute compliance standards.
  • IUID registration is the responsibility of the Prime Contractor.
  • Don’t take shortcuts, it’ll only cost you later.
  • Get your data right from the start.
  • Keep an accurate record of all UII and IUID creation.

6. Relying on a partial solutions partner. It is vital to choose the right partner who supports IUID. A2B Tracking supports IUID and is always compliant with DoD guidelines. A2B provides:

  • Labels, plates, RFID tags and Military Shipping Labels
  • IUID defense compliance portal for WAWF and IUID management
  • Turnkey asset tracking software with IUID and RFID
  • Marking and Data Capture services
  • Professional services for installations, training and process analysis