Regardless of their products and existing processes, businesses are constantly looking for ways to utilise new technologies as they become available to help reduce their costs, prevent errors from occurring and increase the overall efficiency of their operation. As these new technologies and industry standards are introduced, larger businesses will often require other businesses in their supply chain to adopt these standards to ensure the benefits can be fully achieved. Over the last 12 months, it has become increasingly apparent that one company in particular are helping to set the standards for many major international business operations and that is GS1.
GS1 are global leaders in providing supply and demand chain standards across a wide range of business sectors through the use of their dynamic barcode technology. Encoded as either a pattern of squares in a 2D grid or a particularly long regular barcode, GS1 barcodes offer a streamlined method of transferring several different fields of data into a compatible device with a single scan. This information includes key details such as a product’s EAN code, batch number, serial number, expiry/best before/sell by date and quantity.
As a fast and highly accurate way of recording this essential product information including traceability data, GS1 barcodes have been widely used in both the food and pharmaceutical industries for a while now. However with huge accuracy and efficiency benefits also on offer to businesses using GS1 Barcodes in their daily processes, more and more businesses have begun introducing the use of these barcodes to help improve their warehouse operations. Today, GS1 barcodes are used by around two million companies around the world with more than six billion transactions processed using these barcodes each day.
The big question is however, should your business be looking to start using GS1 barcodes too?
The answer to that is a resounding yes.
Although there are clear benefits your business can gain from using GS1 Barcodes when booking in goods, despatching orders to customers, performing stock takes and generally managing stock on a daily basis when batch, serial or expiry date information is used, the main reason your business should be looking to implement the use of GS1 barcodes is because many major retailers, popular online marketplaces, food service operators and healthcare organisations are already using this format to their advantage. Soon these companies will insist their supply chain also use this technology, therefore it is important that if you are looking to begin or continue to trade with large businesses using GS1 barcodes that you too should look into using these within warehouse operations. After all if you don’t, there’s a good chance your competitors will.
In fact for a number of major businesses and large organisations, the process of implementing GS1 barcodes into their supply chain as part of industry standards is already well underway. For the last few years, the procurement strategy for the NHS has had a mandate in place to ensure that full implementation of GS1 barcoding is in place by 2016, helping to bring the organisation in line with France who have GS1 standards for medical devices implemented since 2011. This full implementation will not only help the NHS to increase efficiencies, but also improve the quality of care and save each hospital in England around £3 Million each year.
In addition to this, August 2015 saw some of the UK’s largest retailers and suppliers launch a new initiative to use GS1 barcodes to develop a set of industry agreed standards for inbound logistics in order to help tackle hidden operating costs, delays and general inefficiencies. Companies involved in this new initiative included a number of heavyweight businesses, including Boots, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Morrisons, Nestle and Tesco. You can read more about this initiative HERE.
Although using GS1 barcodes is becoming increasingly essential in the pharmaceutical, healthcare and food industries with each passing month, any business looking to trade with large retail organisations, accurately record traceability details or generally improve operational efficiency should also begin looking at systems that offer GS1 barcode support.
Use OrderWise To Help Your Business Become Compliant With GS1 Standards
With OrderWise, businesses are provided with the perfect combination of a comprehensive mobile software suite and GS1 barcode scanning technology in the form of our Mobile WMS Devices. These Wi-Fi and 3G enabled PDA Scanners are designed to help increase the performance of staff when conducting a wide range of common warehouse tasks. Offering full support for GS1 Barcodes, OrderWise Mobile WMS Devices allow businesses to massively streamline picking, works order picking, packing, goods in, stock takes, stock adjustments, stock replenishments, put away and much, much more.
By using these Mobile WMS Devices, businesses can reap all the benefits that using GS1 Barcodes has to offer. Instead of having to scan or record several pieces of information separately when handling goods receipt, stock takes or picking, this is now achieved with one simple press of a button. This can cut stock taking times in half, make goods receipt an extremely rapid process and help businesses pick more orders without having to increase their staffing levels. Add in the ability to automatically record traceability details as well as the maximisation of both accuracy and efficiency that is generated by using OrderWise Mobile WMS Devices and businesses have themselves the ultimate tool for managing everyday warehouse operations.
Drive Better Business Management With GS1 Barcodes
It is evidently clear that there is a lot to be gained from utilising GS1 Barcodes, which is why so many large companies are turning to this technology to help save time, reduce costs and drive much greater productivity into all processes throughout their supply chain. So if your business hasn’t looked into how you can use GS1 Barcodes to your advantage yet, then you may want to start soon or risk being left behind.
For more information on how OrderWise Mobile WMS Devices including full support for GS1 Barcodes can help your business to effectively manage warehouse operations, download our brochures or watch our videos.
Existing users can find out full details by contacting our Client Services Team.
To discuss your requirements in detail contact us today on 01522 704083.