Improve Operational Efficiency
Since bar codes permit faster and more accurate recording of information, work-in-process can move quickly and be tracked precisely. Quite a bit of time can be spent tracking down the location or status of projects, folders, instruments, materials or anything else that moves within an organisation. Bar code can help you keep better track so you can save time and respond more quickly to inquiries and changes.
Depending on the application, time savings can be significant. Often the most dramatic examples involve the beloved chore of taking inventory. One customer needed a crew of 25 employees working over a weekend to take the 6-month inventory; with bar codes this was reduced to 4 employees and a total of about 5 hours. Even in routine day-to-today operations the time savings of bar codes add up and improve productivity. Consider a shipment of 10 cartons; it will take approximately 2 minutes or more to write down product codes and serial numbers compared to about 10 to 20 seconds to scan the bar codes. In a busy operation this can be a significant saving.
Clerical and data entry errors can be a significant source of costs and related problems: extra freight costs, unhappy customers, and time spent to track down problems are just a few examples. In some situations, clerical errors can have a much more dramatic impact: consider the importance of accuracy in pharmaceutical or blood bank applications. The typical error rate for human data entry is 1 error per 300 characters. Bar code scanners are much more accurate; the error rate can be as good as 1 error in 36 trillion characters depending on the type of bar code used.
Bar codes are effective tools that can be used to address specific, localised problems or integrated into organisation-wide information systems. When applied with thought and planning they can save time and reduce errors resulting in a reduction of costs.
Benefit from Customer or Regulatory Requirements
Regulatory agencies or your customers may impose labeling requirements that you must meet. While these requirements may be a necessary part of doing business, you can save time and money by utilising the bar codes within your own operations. For example, you can collect shipping manifest information quickly and accurately by scanning the bar codes labels that you printed to satisfy the customer.