Taking the manual out of data collection

Automated bar coding the secret ingredient for inventory accuracy and production tracking.
By Josh Bond, Associate Editor
October 22, 2011 - MMH Editorial

Manual data collection can bog down inventory management or production processes, and can introduce inaccuracies and inefficiencies throughout a company’s operations. Red Gold, one of the nation’s largest full-line tomato product manufacturers, has raised its inventory accuracy to 99% and improved production tracking by replacing its manual system with a bar code-based data collection solution.

The Indiana-based company was using a wholly manual, paper-based process to track inventory and finished goods production. As cans of tomato products were loaded into cases and palletized, machine operators, lift truck operators and palletizer operators would have to write down multiple pieces of information to record production.

Manufacturing and shipping operators also had to record a variable-length case code that was stenciled onto each shipping tray or case. These codes, eight to 14-characters long, including both alphabetic and numeric characters, were unstructured and not always printed in the same place on the trays or cases. Red Gold’s primary distribution center may have 50,000 to 60,000 pallets in storage on any given day, and between 100 to 200 trucks moving through the facility each day.

The new system was deployed in phases between 2002 and 2007 at three facilities. While most orders are for full pallets of product, the new system allows operators to build mixed pallets within the system and generate new pallet labels that reflect these case moves.

Staff members appreciate the new system, which has cut labor costs at multiple points throughout the process. By standardizing company case codes and automatically tracking each case electronically, the system has also improved compliance with customer and government traceability requirements.

Integrated Barcoding Systems
517-266-7771
http://www.intbarcode.com

More Technology Coverage

More from Modern’s 2012 Casebook



About the Author

image
Josh Bond
Associate Editor

Josh Bond is an associate editor to Modern. Josh was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and contributing editor, has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce.


Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world's most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

American Logistics Aid Network mobilizes logistics partners to deliver supplies to difficult-to-reach areas.

In a fundamentally changed world, your approach to strategy, and your supply chain, must also change. Andrew Winston, author of The Big Pivot, discusses how business can profit from this fundamental change.

Voice-enabled work is one element in a broad management strategy to improve order accuracy, increase productivity, and reduce labor costs in the supply chain. This complimentary white paper is designed to help you speak the ROI language, and provides a calculation formula to present the performance and financial payback from a variety of voice-enabled applications.

Conveyor manufacturers revise growth estimate up from 2% to 5%.

Experienced executive joins provider of automated storage and retrieval systems.

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.


© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA