Convergent Software works closely with RFID-related standards and develops data encoding and privacy compliance software to support and encourage the correct use of RFID.

RFID in Libraries

- QC Service.

The unique ISO 28560-2 Quality Control Service is provided by Convergent Software Ltd (CSL) to assist libraries and librarians to test whether the encoding on an RFID tag conforms to the rules defined in ISO 28560-1 and ISO 28560-2, and to the specific requirements of the library. The service may be used at any time by the library, for example:

  • during conversion to the ISO 28560-2 data model
  • when new data configurations are being considered
  • as a quality control test on tags from new suppliers

The service could save a great deal of time, effort and money by shortcutting the process of finding and diagnosing problems with the encoding of tags.

The Problem

ISO 28560-2 offers the benefits of selecting data elements and encoding variable length data. Flexible encoding is both common and successfully implemented in EDI and XML messages used by libraries. The same principles, but different encoding rules, are applied in ISO 28560-2. Initially, with conversions to ISO 28560-2, and with book suppliers and inter-library loan partners providing RFID tags on stock, how does a library easily identify what is encoded on the tag and whether it complies with the standard, and to its own data requirements?

The Solution

The easiest way to check conformance is to use a service that has been designed just for that purpose. The independently-operated Australian ISO 28560-2 certification procedure uses software from Convergent Software. We offer a similar service to any library anywhere to operate in-house using supported equipment. The service element comes into play when errors are detected on your tags.

How it works

After installing software from CSL and a supported reading device, you scan your tags with the device and the software will tell you if the encoding complies with the rules specified in ISO 28560-2.

For successful decodes, the software displays what is encoded on the tag, allowing you to check this against your own data requirements. ISO 28560-2 is very flexible in terms of which data elements are encoded and in what sequence. It is important to check that the right data elements are included and in the right order to meet your library's requirements.

For failed decodes (i.e. non-conformant tag encoding), you can utilise the service element. Send the encoded data from the tag (displayed in the software) to CSL and we will use our knowledge and experience of ISO 28560-2 to analyse the encoding to diagnose any problems therein. We will write this up and send it back to you. This could be invaluable for you in problem resolution discussions with the provider of the tag encoding.


The software costs £300 and can be installed on a single computer.
Additional licences can be purchased at £50 each.

The service costs £30/tag.

If you wish to purchase the software, please contact us.

Pricing Note

All prices are exclusive of VAT, which will be charged where appropriate.

Convergent Software will, if required, convert at current exchange rates to one of the following currencies:

  • Australian Dollars (AUD)
  • Canadian Dollars (CAD)
  • Euro (EUR)
  • US Dollars (USD)

Device Note

If you do not have a supported device, you can still use the software, as long as you can get a hexadecimal representation of the tag encoding. This can simply be pasted into the software and decoded.

Conformance Note

While a successful decode provides a good indication that other tags encoded with the same data elements and using the same software system are conformant, no guarantee is given to this effect.The a successful decode does not equate to a certificate that all tags encoded using the same software will also pass. The data elements within ISO 28560 may contain a wide range of data values. The test procedure assumes that a supplier will employ only permitted values and data structures within each element when specified in the various parts of ISO 28560.

Note to Vendors

The QC Service is offered exclusively to libraries and is not available to RFID system vendors. Convergent Software has other products and services available to the vendor community.

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