Proper inventory tracking and management is an essential function of any business. Although business owners can theoretically track inventory using spreadsheets or paper calculations, barcode systems make your inventory easier to manage. When effectively implemented, barcode solutions optimize your inventory tracking methods, and reduce the workload for you or your employees. If you are interested in revamping your inventory management procedures, continue reading this post to learn how to keep track of inventory with barcodes.
Define Pertinent Information
The first step in establishing your barcode system is to define all pertinent information about your inventory. List all the information you want to appear when a barcode is scanned. Most businesses need the barcode to detail the price and product name. Other businesses require a more specific description of products, including size, color, or brand. For your tracking purposes, you likely need to include the minimum amount of a product you need in inventory at all times. That way, you will be notified upon scanning when you are low on products. Moreover, look to include the items location within the barcode information. This allows your employees to quickly look up products and find their location. Define the pertinent information you wish to include on your barcodes to set up your system.
Consider Barcode Options
Consider the barcode options available for your inventory. The types of barcode design you implement greatly impacts the result you obtain. Most commonly, businesses choose between implementing either 1D or 2D barcode formats. One dimensional barcodes are the traditional codes made up of black lines with white spacing. These require a scanner to be identified. Two dimensional barcodes are also referred to as QR codes. These can hold much more information than 1D barcodes. In addition, their information can be accessed simply by scanning codes with your mobile phone. Having employees scan barcodes with their mobile devices saves you from purchasing multiple scanners, greatly reducing equipment costs to implement your system. Research the best barcode options to manage your inventory processes.
Once you detail your information and identify your best barcode option, purchase the necessary equipment to implement your plans. The most important purchase is likely your barcode scanners. Most businesses need to purchase a bulk quantity of scanners. This guarantees you have enough equipment for all your employees, as well as to make certain you have backups in case scanners break or go missing. The best option for many businesses is wireless scanners. These are handheld, and either battery-powered or chargeable. In addition to scanners, you also need enough barcode labels for all your inventory. Moreover, to obtain the best results you will likely need to purchase a thermal printer. Consider the equipment you need to purchase to manage your inventory with barcodes.
Choose A Software
Choose a software to house your barcode information. Typically, barcodes are specific codes that are recognized by barcode software applications. Without this software, you likely will not be able to obtain any information when scanning products. In barcode software applications, you enter the information relevant to your product. Then, applications generate unique barcodes for each of your product types and categories. When your employees scan barcodes, their results will be pulled directly from these applications. Barcode software frequently ranges in cost, and is dependent on the amount of inventory you plan on storing. Choose and purchase a software application to implement your barcode inventory systems.
The final step to implementing your system is to generate your barcodes. Determine the levels of specificity you want for each barcode. Do you want different barcodes for the same products in different colors even if they are sold for the same price? More specific barcodes make inventory easier to track. This makes reordering more accurate and consistent. However, it also takes much longer to create, print, and assign labels of multiple different classes. At the same time, with so many different product types and categories, it increases the risk that an error may occur. Before you begin tracking your inventory, you first must generate the physical barcodes.
Barcoding is an increasingly popular and manageable way to track your inventory. Establishing a barcoding process for your business is becoming increasingly easier. First, you must detail the information you want to be included on barcodes. Consider the barcode options available to your business. Then, you must purchase the necessary equipment to implementing your plan. Choose a software to house your barcode data. Finally, generate your barcodes and apply them to products. Follow this post if you are considering learning how to keep track of inventory with barcodes.