The last in this series of blogs on how to create a decent barcode scanning solution looks at what you need to do ongoing when the solution has been launched.  The blog is designed to stimulate your brain into thinking about what you need to be doing to keep things running smoothly.

Tip 1 – Check your barcodes and keep checking them.  If you print them, then check your printers are in top condition as the slightest mark or drum smudge can ruin a whole set of barcodes for you.  If bought in then you rarely get issues but a quick scan check of each roll doesn;t harm.  If you use other people’s barcodes then again keep checking them for scan efficiency and also check they haven’t changed at all!

Tip 2 – Keep your hardware running, have a few spars on the shelf and also make sure you have a plan to replace barcode scanners quickly and easily.  Many manufacturers now have basic configuration software that allows you to set up a whole bunch of barcode scanners in one go, remotely if required, just like an MDM solution for Rugged PDA’s.

Tip 3 – Get feedback from users about how things are working.  Until you ask, your users might not tell you so ensure you constantly check what people are doing, where they might need help but also where they might be employing practises you didn’t think about when designing the solution.

Tip 4 – Check labels are working for any scenarios that might not have been thought about.  Is light playing an issue here, is a warehouse door open or light on that wasn’t when you came and tested originally.

Tip 5 – Likewise check that the hardware being used is doing the job too.  We see many people using budget barcode scanners that cost £20 less than the ideal ones, but they waste hours of user time and create huge frustration with the users.  If the hardware is not working out, then change it!

Tip 6 – Ensure that you have the right reseller and consultants in place to step in and help you when issues are found and tweaks need to be made.  A lot of the time barcode solution issues can be managed using the experience of a reseller and few choice tweaks they can make to existing hardware or solutions.

Tip 7 – Lastly make sure you keep your eye on what is needed next.  Any barcode solution will be outgrown eventually, that’s the idea of it all.  Always keep one eye on what you might need to be doing in 3 or 5 years down the line and what ID technology will be best to use.

That’s it, tomorrow we’ll turn to hardware and look at the scan technology that barcode scanners use in more depth.

The Rugged and Mobile blog.