Before 2020 ends, you should consider three things. Are you:
#1 - Leveraging New Innovations?
- Internet Enabled Printers – Heard about these? True plug ‘n play. One-time setup (we can help). Once configured for your cloud-based application, you can plug them in anywhere on the planet (with Internet access) and start printing. Can this help lower downtime and support calls?
- Labeling and Tracking in the Cloud – Many brands of labeling and tracking software can now be deployed in the cloud. Store, share, and control your label designs and tracking data in the cloud. Even link with other cloud-based applications (SAP, Oracle, Dynamics, etc.) for true ‘cloud to cloud’ integration. Can moving to the cloud make sharing, controlling, and integration easier and cheaper to deploy and support?
- Productivity in Your Pocket – Android is becoming the dominate mobile business productivity platform. Increasingly labeling and printing systems support Android. Thus, you now have the option of buying specialized high performance and rugged mobile scanners or…you might be able to use the device already sitting in your pocket. Can your organization benefit by using Android devices to run your labeling or tracking system?
#2 – Using Infrastructure Built to Last?
- Scanning and Printing Hardware – Newer barcode and RFID scanners generally work faster, last longer, and in some cases cost less. Wireless devices often cover greater distances, run off the battery longer, and retain connection better. The latest thermal printers offer easier setup, remote control, less maintenance, and more efficient use of media. Will your scanners and printers get you through 2021?
- Software – Make sure you run on the supported software. Typically, 1-2 years after a new release, software companies stop supporting the old software version. If your system crashes, most software companies WILL NOT FIX the old version. While your labeling system is down, you need to recover your old files and data first, THEN do the upgrade to the latest version. This can take days or weeks! We call it the ‘Emergency Upgrade’. Do you need to upgrade your software to a supported version?
#3 - Maximizing Existing Tools?
- Controls – Larger customers, the government, and your quality assurance team increasingly demands better controls over your labeling and tracking systems. For labeling that typically means version control, label history, and designing customized forms for print users. For both labeling and tracking systems it means role-based user security and traceability. Your software most likely already provides these features. Are you using the existing tools to prevent error and control the process?
- Automation – Most labeling and tracking systems support automation. If people interact with the system just to transfer information from one to another, consider ways to connect the two systems directly. It may surprise you to find what features in your software already support this type of integration. Can you use automation features to connect systems directly?
- Centralization – Increasing reliability and speed of the Internet, combined with software changes, make it easier to centralize label printing and data storage over different geographic sites. Centralization lowers costs and effort with system maintenance, control, and standardization. Would centralization improve your labeling or tracking system?
Want more information or help with your planning? Let’s talk. This service is included as part of your existing support and maintenance plan.
Looking forward to strong 2021!