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Adopting Automated Data Collection For SMBs

Posted April 6, 2012

Finding and calculating the value of automated data capture technology at small and medium businesses


Any business that would benefit by holding less inventory, decreasing mis-shipments and reducing errors should seriously consider implementing bar code systems and other forms of automated data collection (ADC) technology. Companies of all sizes apply bar code and wireless data collection systems to save labor, increase efficiency and cut operations costs. ADC is a proven productivity enhancer, and advancements in the technology have made such systems affordable and practical for more businesses than ever before.

Common errors and inefficiencies don’t have to be part of business as usual. This paper exposes some of the hidden expenses that hamper profitability, and how accurate data collection can eliminate them. The examples and techniques presented show the link between quality information and efficient operations. When investing in ADC, small-to-medium sized businesses (SMBs) can earn a full and rapid return on investment through reduced expenses and increased productivity. This white paper will help show how by presenting ADC cost-justification guidelines and strategies.

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Bar Coding and RFID Enable Food Supply Chain Traceability and Safety

Posted March 22, 2012

In the early days of bar coding, an Efficient Foodservice Response (EFR) study identified $847 million in savings potentially available by expanding bar coding within the food supply chain. Since then, the U.S. Bioterrorism Act, European Union Food Law, and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) requirements mandate improved product identification and traceability. Today, technologies, techniques, and standards exist to help organizations throughout the food supply chain gain complete traceability for safety, compliance, and business process improvement.

Momentum is growing to implement whole-chain traceability, which includes internal and external visibility, from the grower, through the distributor, to the retailer. A key industry effort is the Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI), which strives to achieve supply chain-wide adoption of electronic traceability of every case of produce by 2012. Once fully adopted, PTI will improve the effectiveness of current trace-back procedures while enabling common standards for future traceability systems.

This white paper examines how the food industry can take advantage of bar code and radio frequency identification (RFID) technologies to improve safety, reduce operating expenses, meet compliance requirements, and improve efficiency. It covers:

  • How bar code and RFID support compliance with regulations such as the Bioterrorism Act , EU Food Law, and The Food Safety Enhancement Act (H.R. 2749)
  • Traditional uses and advantages of bar code data collection
  • Emerging technologies and standards, including Reduced Space Symbology (RSS) bar codes, Electronic Product Code (EPC) RFID technology, and the GS1 Global Traceability Standard (GS1 DataBar).

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Motorola MC2100 Rugged Mobile Computer Offers Good Value to Enterprises

Posted December 14, 2011

Motorola MC2100Motorola Solutions introduced the MC2100 industrial mobile computer series, addressing the need for a smaller, rugged mobile computer that expands the range of solutions available for both large enterprises and small- and medium-sized businesses.

Motorola MC2100 Key Facts

  • Motorola redefines the value tier for rugged mobile computers with five configurations of the MC2100 that include three different barcode scannning engines, options for batch and WLAN connectivity, and vertical-specific accessories.
  • The lightweight and ergonomic MC2100 is ideal for inventory management, stock replenishment, price marking, and shelf labeling.
  • The MC2100 will be the first value-tier rugged handheld in the mobile computing industry to support HTML5 via Motorola’s RhoElements application enablement framework.
  • The MC2100 mobile computing series leverages the same hardware platform as other Motorola mobile computing products to help simplify application support and integration into an enterprise environment.
  • Motorola’s MC2100 mobile computer will be available with the Service from the Start with Comprehensive Coverage program, providing coverage for normal wear and tear as well as accidental damage to internal and external components, significantly reducing unforeseen repair expenses.
  • Motorola’s MC2100 mobile computing series is expected to ship in the first quarter of 2012.

IntelliTrack Warehouse Management System (WMS) 8.1 Now Available

Posted June 16, 2011

Version 8.1 of IntelliTrack Warehouse Management System (WMS) is available for WMS RF Standard, WMS RF Professional and ISRP applications.

IntelliTrack, a leading developer of barcode, RFID and wireless warehouse inventory software, announced today the release of WMS version 8.1 Warehouse Management Software. A significant improvement includes support for Microsoft Access 2010 and Windows Server 2008 R2. Version 8.1 also includes added portable device support for devices running Windows CE 6.5 and Windows Mobile 6.5.

“IntelliTrack is excited about the release of WMS version 8.1,” says Ron Pawlowski, COO of IntelliTrack. Pawlowski adds, “We added support for Access 2010 runtime and Windows Server 2008 R2 to stay current with the newest Microsoft Office 2010 release. IntelliTrack will continue working with the latest Microsoft technology and strive to meet our clients’ requests and requirements.”

IntelliTrack WMS (Warehouse Management System) includes applications for WMS RF Standard, WMS RF Professional and Inventory, Shipping, Receiving, Picking (ISRP). The release of v8.1 improves support for industry standard Microsoft technologies.

Datalogic Mobile Computers Help Furniture Store Manage Its Inventory

Posted January 28, 2011

Challenge: Improve labeling operations in order to concentrate on customer relations

Combining the concepts of travel and decoration, Maisons du Monde is a retailer specializing in furniture and interior decoration with 200 shops. A true success story, the retailer has been able to rise to prominence in a booming market and expand to several European countries in less than 15 years.

Maisons du Monde’s original positioning and its collections that are renewed continuously to adapt to current trends are the retailer’s winning qualities. In this logistical environment where the management of stock and collections is essential, the French brand has decided to turn to various technological partners who can introduce an innovative marking and identification system.

In order to enable its shop assistants to concentrate on the customers rather than on restrictive and particularly time-consuming labeling operations, the retailer wanted to introduce modern and progressive mobile technologies for item labeling and in-store inventory management of different collections.

Maisons du Monde turned to industrial partners specializing in marking and printing who were capable of implementing a universal solution very quickly in all shops in France.

A few essential requirements were established in order to deal with the enormity of the project and the extremely short deadline:

  • “PDA/mobile printers” materials must ensure that items are handled rapidly, while making employees fully mobile
  • Predominantly centralized technical support management must enable each shop to be run remotely without requiring a technician to work on-site

“In contrast to large-scale food retail, specialist retailers, such as Maisons du Monde do not have a digital price display system using electronic labels, enabling prices to be modified remotely. In-store relabeling and stocktaking are carried out manually and require significant attention; a pricing error has irreparable negative consequences on customers”, explains Guillaume Cesbron, chief information officer at Maisons du Monde. ” Faced with this problem, we therefore looked for a fully mobile, non cumbersome, highly reliable material and software solution, that used portable PDA mobile devices linked to wireless printers“, he adds.

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RFID: Track and Trace

Posted June 25, 2009

Outsourcing continues to remain a dominant force throughout the pharmaceutical industry, as more companies than ever move to the “virtual world” of contract manufacturing. By incorporating outsourcing — a cost-effective, flexible approach to resource allocation and investment — into a company’s overall business strategy, pharmaceutical companies gain new opportunities to sustain long-term growth and competitive advantage. But the increasing globalization of the contract manufacturing market can lead to a rush to expand practices in low-cost countries, straining brand owners’ ability to manage and control their manufacturing, packaging and supply chain operations.

Despite outsourcing growth and the availability of Web-based tools, few manufacturing companies have successfully automated communications and operations to collaborate with suppliers, distributors and contract manufacturers. Instead, they still continue to rely on outdated processes that contribute to delays, errors and excessive inventory and costs.

To succeed with pharmaceutical outsourcing, a company must collaborate closely with partners. In order to succeed with collaboration, a company must have in place technologies and processes that improve control, visibility and velocity across the outsourced network — namely barcoding, radio-frequency identification (RFID) and track and trace capabilities.

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