Need Speed Across the Supply Chain? It’s All About the Barcode

Barcode labels are a smart and cost-effective way to make productivity gains in your warehouse.

The Amazon effect has upended the retail industry and wreaked havoc on supply chains. Speed has emerged as the critical success factor. Every extra minute it takes your team to locate a product or validate a shipment makes it harder for you to compete.

One of the smartest places to start upping your competitive game is also one of the simplest. Barcode labels. They’re recognized as the lowest hanging fruit and the logical place to begin improving productivity—and something as simple as the right label printer can help speed up your internal processes. Barcode labels already play an essential role in your supply chain. They are also a smart and cost-effective way to start making productivity gains in your warehouse.

Barcoding saves valuable time and ensures accurate information at every key warehouse station, including:

  • Receiving: Applying barcode labels as soon as inbound items arrive ensures they can be accurately unloaded, checked in, put away, or handled by automated applications.
  • Picking: Generating labels for each item picked allows them to be scanned in a staging or packing area where they are easily sorted for shipment.

  • Packaging: Creating new labels is vital for identifying finished goods that you have kitted, assembled, or packaged.
  • Shipping and Returns: Ship-to order applications can incorporate customer-specific labeling, scanning to fulfill orders, and generating return shipping labels and paperwork that include time-saving credit and put-away location data.
  • Cross-docking: Ideal for time-sensitive or fast-moving goods, cross-docking sends inbound items out again without their spending time in your facility. Warehouse workers with mobile printers and scanners can hop inside inbound trucks at the dock and start relabeling cartons for store or customer delivery, increasing the efficiency of that important last-mile delivery.

With so many places to streamline, it’s important to select the right printers. The compact and lightweight new Brother TD-4 family of desktop printers offers market-leading performance, connectivity, and ease of use, all backed by the industry’s best two-year warranty and nearly 30 years of industry experience and innovation. Like the best-selling RuggedJet Series mobile printers from Brother, the new TD-4 printer family seamlessly integrates with and prints directly from WMS and mobile devices.

In this "new normal" competitive environment there’s no room for failure. To achieve 100% scannable labels, opt for reliable, quality Brother printers with the right technology for your application.

Direct thermal printers are ideal for shipping labels, receipts, and many general-purpose uses. However, if you are labeling racks, or need labels to be 100% scannable after six months or more, you’ll want the enhanced durability of thermal transfer technology.

Traditionally, that’s meant buying different printers for each method of printing. Thanks to Brother’s new TD-4 family, there’s even a model that prints both direct thermal and thermal transfer labels. So, while you’re doing more with fewer people, you might also do more with fewer printers.

All Brother barcode printers are flexible, fast, easy to use, and competitively priced to help you compete more effectively. By saving time and money with more barcoding from Brother, you may find the Amazon effect working in your favor.

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