Accurate labeling and tracking of products prevents of theft, counterfeiting, and the accidental release of uncontrolled products. Companies in regulated industries require strict label controls to ensure accurate labeling. These controls include precise tracking of labels created, used, and destroyed. The ability to create an exact duplicate label can frustrate efforts to control. However, reprinting labels is necessary at times. This Efficient Label Example demonstrates an approach to effectively uniquely mark label reprints.
Business Problem & Solution
Watermarks, automatically applied to all reprints by the software, can help prevent using duplicate labels. TEKLYNX CENTRAL offers this capability. Our customer did not want to use the watermark feature in TEKLYNX CENTRAL for labeling products. It might cause concern about the integrity of the product. A customer, seeing the product with "Reprint" on the label, may attempt to return it. Additionally, it is impossible to differentiate between two reprint labels with the same watermark.The ideal solution must allow a reprint without watermark. The reprint needs to show all data printed on the original label exactly as originally printed. But, the system must also mark the label with a unique value to differentiate reprints from each other.
The client overcame this problem by adding a Print Date field on the label. By using the re-request reprint feature in TEKLYNX CENTRAL, they configured the Print Date field to automatically update each time they reprinted the label. Since the Print Date field changes when the label is reprinted, this allows someone to identify if the label was reprinted on a day different than the production date.
Key System Components
- TEKLYNX CENTRAL Labeling Software
- Zebra ZT600 Thermal Printer
- SAP ERP System
How it Works
At print time, the client designed the label to prompt the user for special data. This data included:
- Manufacture Date
- Expiration Date
When the user generates the original print job, TEKLYNX CENTRAL stores all variable data in the LABEL ARCHIVE database. The variable data includes the Lot#, Manufacture Date, and Expiration Date mentioned above. Then, when executing a reprint in TEKLYNX CENTRAL, TEKLYNX CENTRAL access that same label history. The software uses those stored variables to rerun the label job.
However, our client configured the label not to store the Print Date value in the LABEL ARCHIVE history. So, when TEKLYNX CENTRAL performed a reprint, it pulled the Print Date from the computer system clock (not the database). We call this a re-request label. This way, the Print Date allows shows the actual date printed to appear on the label.
If the user reprints the same label on a later date, the Print Date will not match the manufacture date and the user can differentiate between the two.
- Manufacture Date - based on date in system clock when the ORIGINAL label was created
- Print Date - based on the date in the system clock the label was last printed
Original Label: Print Date is the same as Manufacture Date
Re-request Label: Original Label with new Print Date
The re-request label and true reprint label features, both available in TEKLYNX CENTRAL v5, offered options for our client. This choice is particularly helpful in situations that call for a Date Printed field. By using the choosing the re-request approach, we can point the Date Printed field in TEKLYNX CENTRAL to the computer system clock. Therefore, at reprint time, our client allows users to reprint an exact copy of a previously created label and mark that copy with a current date. If you need help resolving a similar problem, please contact us and we would be glad to assist!
- Zebra (ZIH Corp.)
- TEKLYNX International