Commentary | IT Matters

Enterprise Labeling for a Connected, Flexible, and Efficient Supply Chain

Tags: Logistics I.T., Global Logistics, Packaging, Bar-coding Systems, Supply Chain

Josh Roffman is Vice President, Product Management, Loftware

Looking toward the future, businesses are taking a more standardized approach and respecting the key role that labeling solutions play in the supply chain. Companies are beginning to understand that they need to develop a labeling strategy to meet all of the challenges of today’s global supply chain. This new focus on the strategic value of labeling has required a more innovative approach called “enterprise labeling.”

This dynamic and data-driven approach, which allows businesses to react to evolving customer, regional, and regulatory requirements, empowers business users to quickly and efficiently design and maintain barcode labels. It also ensures consistency across a global supply chain, enabling companies to meet performance and scalability requirements with the power and flexibility to support complex, global, and high-volume labeling requirements.

This smarter and more efficient way of doing business provides standardization, allowing companies to achieve consistency and flexibility to support changing labeling requirements. It also provides a platform that is scalable and easily supported and maintained. The following outlines the essentials of this approach for managing labeling across a global enterprise.

Connecting labeling with business processes: Providing the opportunity to work with existing business processes and vital data sources allows companies to standardize and offer consistency throughout their operations. This approach allows shippers to save time and money by maximizing existing investments and eliminating the need to retrain users.

Enabling integrated, automated labeling: Certified integration capabilities allow companies to automate labeling processes, directly leverage sources of truth for label data, and avoid mislabeling issues which can cost businesses time and money.

Allowing rapid change via data-driven labeling: Companies faced with evolving customer and business requirements can streamline label changes with advanced business logic. This enables label formatting and content to change dynamically to support a myriad of different label combinations with a minimum number of label designs. Users can quickly and easily configure business logic to support a wide range of regional, language, customer, and regulatory requirements, while enabling the automatic routing of print requests. This removes a significant burden from IT, eliminating the need to maintain custom code or manage a staggering number of label designs.

Empowering business users to manage label design: Allowing centralized control and consistency and enabling users across an organization to access and update label templates, these solutions offer business users the flexibility to design labels that meet evolving requirements without needing IT. This eliminates resource bottlenecks and speeds the process. Also, browser-based capabilities make deploying design capabilities and managing usage easier than ever.

Supporting high-volume global printing: For global organizations it’s critical to be able to print to a diverse set of printer makes and models with the speed and performance needed to support your operations. Enterprise labeling solutions allow companies to optimize speed and network efficiency by communicating with printers in their native language, with the ability to design labels independent of the printer make/model.

Extending labeling for business partners: Empowering suppliers and business partners to execute label printing enables immediate deployment of label changes, while ensuring accuracy and adherence to standards. Browser-based, on-demand print capabilities enable central control of label designs while providing flexibility to print anywhere across the global supply chain. This increases supply chain efficiency, while decreasing the risk and associated costs of mislabeling.

Providing simplified maintenance and deployment: Offering the ability to standardize and deploy labeling solutions on a centralized basis provides great flexibility. Enterprise labeling provides complete control over how capabilities are deployed across their global landscape, from design to print, to integration. This approach also provides a standard for labeling which allows businesses to maintain consistency and provide another level of scalability and reliability to support a global network of printers. This is essential when allowing users to manage outages and connectivity issues, while providing high availability, failover, and disaster recovery capabilities.

Leveraging best practices and domain experience: Enterprise labeling solutions stress the importance of domain expertise in labeling. This approach focuses on understanding the unique regulations, business processes, and regional nuances that are pervasive in each industry.






Visit Our Sponsors