In today’s world, manufacturing, warehousing and distribution are increasingly real-time operations. Manufacturers not only need to know what’s happening on the assembly line, but also where the totes and pallets with work-in-process are located. Warehousers and distributors rely on real-time views of inventory and orders to meet customer requirements. Real-time reports on shipments once products leave the door are increasingly the norm.
But it’s not just about real-time information. Companies today also want connectivity. That’s the ability to link together the different moving parts of their operations for an integrated view of what’s happening across the supply chain.
Automatic data capture (ADC) technologies like bar code scanning, voice recognition and RFID are the essential tools to providing that real-time information and connectivity. That’s one of the reasons VDC Research Group predicted the different industry segments will grow from 5.6% to 19.5% a year over the next five years in our annual look at the Top 20 automatic data capture suppliers in November 2010.
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About the Author
Bob Trebilcock, editorial director, has covered materials handling, technology, logistics and supply chain topics for nearly 30 years. In addition to Supply Chain Management Review, he is also Executive Editor of Modern Materials Handling. A graduate of Bowling Green State University, Trebilcock lives in Keene, NH. He can be reached at 603-357-0484.