7 Questions to Ask as You Implement Mobility Solutions in Your Warehouse

Check out this great blog post by Larry Klimczyk, Vice President, Intermec Global Solutions:

“We all know the importance of choosing the right mobile device to optimize any warehouse process or solution. Based on the products you are handling, the size and layout of your warehouse, the systems and processes you have in place and your labor skill set, there are a variety of hardware choices to be made. What’s equally important is the framework by which you will prepare and protect that hardware for performance – from the earliest stages of your implementation through end of cycle. To ensure our customers are considering each stage in the lifecycle management of their mobile devices, the following questions should be asked before any implementation:

1. Do you have an existing WMS (Warehouse Management System)?
Understanding what work tasks will be performed and the type of data that will be gathered by your workforce will help determine the optimum solution.  For some processes, you might choose a voice-enabled solution. For processes where a mobile computer screen is needed, it’s necessary to decide if Terminal Emulation or a Browser based solution is more beneficial. Those choices will influence battery management, screen refresh speeds and scan speeds.

2. Will your warehouse have wireless coverage?
There are number of advantages associated with wireless coverage including faster response times and greater flexibility which results in higher productivity and faster returns on the investment.  When setting up a wireless infrastructure we recommend a professional assessment. It can lower your overall infrastructure costs while ensuring 100% coverage for maximum ‘up-time’.

3. How are you going to prepare your devices for deployment?
Loading the right software on the device and deploying it with the user sounds like a straight forward process, however, there are essential time-saving and quality control tools that can enhance this process.  Intermec’s Smart Systems software tools have saved organizations hundreds of hours of labor costs by accurately deploying and managing devices in their warehouses.  For organizations with lean ‘in-house’ resources Intermec offers ReadiCare.  This service simplifies staging and deployment by providing ‘out of the box – ready for use’ devices allowing your team to focus in other areas.

4. Are your training plans and resources structured for a successful technology implementation?
Research shows that less than 25% of mobility project teams properly plan adequate training for users impacted by the new equipment and processes, leading to one of the highest reasons projects fail.  Without proper training, the ongoing costs escalate and benefits are not realized. Intermec’s Education team provides resources that enhance your training program through in person, train the trainer and online training. We also provide new employee training on applications due to workforce turnover.

5. How will you deal with damages and repairs?
Through extended use your devices could incur damage and need repairs. Intermec offers the options of repair services and maintaining a spares pool thereby ensuring your operations remain fully equipped and productive.

6. How will you provide and manage user support?
After deployment, who will answer your users’ application and/or device questions? Ensuring maximum ‘up time’ is vital for productive warehouses. Intermec can provide helpdesk support and offer remote device control that instantly solve your users’ questions or issues.

7. Do you use returnable containers in your warehouse / distribution network? Do you often lose them?
If you answered ‘yes’ then you should consider the benefits that RFID can contribute to these processes. With the continual enhancements to read accuracy and the increasingly lower costs of RFID readers and tags, many warehouse and distribution networks are achieving substantial returns on their investments through reduction in labor and tighter control over their assets.

Managing a distribution network is a complex, yet core element to the success of many businesses.   Intermec Global Solutions increases the value of your initial investment and protects your future investments in devices throughout their entire lifecycle with our Total Customer Experience methodology. Our software, engagement and mobile device management services allow you to dedicate more time improving your warehouse key performance areas. We ensure your teams have the right device at the right time with the right applications to manage and grow your business.”

Ryzex and Intemec offer world-class solutions through a platinum-level partnership. Contact Ryzex today to help grow your Warehouse Operations.

How to choose the right media for your barcode printing

A tiny barcode can contain a wealth of information, from product pricing to patient identification. With the efficiency and accuracy of bar codes, the uses continue to grow, as do the media choices. In addition to labels—which come in an array of paper and synthetic materials, with different adhesives for different uses—bar code printers can output to tag and ticket stock, wristbands, polyester, polypropylene, and other synthetic materials. You can use white or colored media, giving you the option to color-code your bar coded items (allowing for enough contrast between the bar code’s bars and the background color so there is sufficient contrast to make the code readable.

You can also buy brand protection media with over and covert security features for authentication, counterfeit deterrence, and secure data code encoding. Media can be coated to resist extreme temperatures, moisture, harsh chemicals, UV exposure, and other hazards.

Environmental conditions and needs will vary from one warehouse to the next, so it’s important to understand what your media will and won’t do so you avoid any mishaps that can lead to costly problems.

Ryzex specializes in bar code printing solutions, from the hardware to the supplies and accessories. We understand the intricacies of choosing the right media, which is why we rely on Genuine Zebra supplies. Because you can’t afford to compromise on quality, we don’t either. Talk to us about conducting a free needs assessment so we can provide you with cost-saving options.

What do you need your bar code label media to do? Are you satisfied with the results? What challenges have you had to face with media in the past? Please post your thoughts, ideas, and solutions here so we can share them with others.

Calculate the ROI for mobile bar code printing in your warehouse

Are you getting the maximum return on investment for your warehouse’s bar code printer? You might benefit from adding mobility to this labeling task. By printing and applying labels at the point of application, you increase operational efficiency and reduce operator errors that occur when labeling in inconvenient locations.

A mobile bar code printer means less time spent traveling back and forth from the warehouse floor to the printing station to pick up labels. You will also remove potential distractions that could lead to wasted time and errors during this trek.

Consider this. If your warehouse holds $10 million worth of inventory and operates at 99 percent accuracy, you have $100,000 worth of missing inventory at any given time. Let’s assume you have 10 inventory turns annually. That one percent error is costing $1 million per year.

Now add in the cost to resolve those errors. At the standard error rate of 2.5 percent and an error cost of $100, a company loses $250 for every 100 orders processed. Operating five days per week, 52 weeks per year, your annual cost to fix the errors is $65,000. Improving your error rate by one percentage point would save your business $41,600 in error-related expenses every year.

Does it make sense to incorporate mobile bar code printing into your warehouse? In truth, it doesn’t make any sense not to!

See for yourself. Use this handy ROI calculator to enter your data.

Talk to a Ryzex representative about the mobile printing options available. We carry the wide range of printers and supplies from Zebra, the worldwide leader in bar code printing technology. Let us find the best solution for you.

Have you met the return on your investment with a mobile printer? Are you still thinking about incorporating the technology? Please post your thoughts, opinions, and experience here so others can learn from you as well

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