Barcode labeling in the manufacturing industry is critical for managing inventory, which is the major asset. Operations that haven’t effectively integrated barcoding are letting profits slip out the door. From the expense of human error to time spent tracking down materials and products, the cost of manual systems is a major expense that can be avoided by the use of barcode labeling and a thermal printer.
Starting in the manufacturing process, raw materials should be labeled. Individual part numbers, batch numbers, warehouse location, and quantities should be encoded. This enables the production staff to track the source of the raw materials, check inventory counts, and verify part numbers. It also allows tracking back to the supplier if defective parts are discovered. By simply having a barcode label thermal printer in the receiving area, materials can be marked at this point of entry.
When you start your inventory management by barcoding in receiving, you can also eliminate manual data entry and the errors that go hand in hand with this approach. With part item details and supplier information already logged into the ERP, it’s an easy task to scan the incoming shipment, which automatically enters it into the inventory. The barcode labels produced here also include the warehouse location, so that put-away and picking is easy, accurate, and less time-consuming.
Compliance labeling is also handled at this step in the process, ensuring that all requirements are met—avoiding costly fines or the risk of losing a customer due to non-compliance. With the required data already entered into the system, along with the label format, the correct compliance label can be quickly produced on the thermal printer as part of the receiving process.
Barcoding also affords real-time data. There are no delays as inventory adjustments are automatically made when the barcodes are scanned at the receiving and shipping points. With better control of inventory counts, the supplier also gains better control of inventory costs! You eliminate overstocks and also avoid the expense of rush orders because depleted supplies weren’t noticed in time.
One of the most overlooked factors in considering the return on investment of a barcode labeling system for inventory management is staff productivity. The time spent on manually entering shipments, locating materials in the warehouse, tracking down lost inventory (incorrectly labeled or misplaced) adds up to wasted labor. If one employee spends 30 minutes per shift correcting errors, by the end of one year, you’ve paid the equivalent of two weeks salary on fixing mistakes. Multiply that by the number of employees and you can probably gain ROI on a barcode labeling system very quickly.
An industrial thermal printer is designed to handle the rough environment of a warehouse operation. The casing is heavy duty and the thermal printer can handle the heavy volume while maintaining high quality printing and speed. Choosing a thermal printer that does not require a specialized printer driver, custom software, or middleware in order to integrate with your system is also a valuable feature because it reduces the total cost of ownership.
IntelliTech International can help you configure a barcode label solution to fit your specific needs. Contact us to learn more about how the right solution can boost your bottom line.