Many manufacturing businesses run efficiently most of the time, but when snags in the production or shipping process arise, they’re not always easy to address. Fortunately, there are emerging technologies that can reduce the number of times these issues crop up in a given month, quarter, or year.These include barcoding systems that help to effectively track items throughout the production process, from receiving to use and back to the shipping dock.

There are many benefits of barcoding, and they tend to show up at each step of the manufacturing process, according to a report from Manufacturing Tomorrow. Chief among them is better organization of products and materials in general. Many manufacturers have sizable warehouses, or even multiple locations, and it’s not always easy to know what should go where when it’s received. But if there’s a barcoding and labeling system in place, all the guesswork goes out of the process. Everything will have a designated spot where it is supposed to go upon arrival.

A related benefit
If each material or item has a clearly defined location as to where it should be when it comes in, that makes locating and tracking each one throughout the manufacturing process a lot easier, the report said. For instance, if a need for a material or item suddenly becomes apparent, a quick search of the system should tell a worker exactly where that item is located, reducing the time it might have otherwise taken to search for them without a defined barcoding and labeling system in place.

Likewise, that can also help companies keep better tabs on exactly what kinds of materials are in inventory, and how much they have on hand, Manufacturing Tomorrow said. That, too, can help to avoid supply snags that might crop up if demand in any given period exceeds normal levels.

Other businesses seeing the benefit as well
In fact, manufacturers aren’t the only ones that can benefit from barcoding software, according to Food Quality News. Around the world, many in the food production industry – which is in many ways an extension of manufacturing – are likewise turning to barcoding to make sure they know exactly what they have on hand at any given time, and how that affects their ongoing efficiency and needs.

The end result of this kind of technology use is obvious: It gives manufacturers and other businesses a clearer handle on the various aspects of the production process that otherwise might have been difficult to navigate. That, in turn, increases efficiency, reduces costs, and generally makes everything run a lot more smoothly from the start of the process to the end. Consequently, those who haven’t yet upgraded to the latest labeling and barcoding technology would be wise to do so in the near future.

For more information about the benefits of barcoding, take the time to download our white paper, titled “Keeping the Physical World and the Virtual World in Sync.”

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