Would you like to prevent a barcode issue from interfering with your business operations? In that case, consider barcode testing. Testing the barcode scanner ensures that the scanner can read a barcode properly. A barcode scanner that is not functional means individuals will have to type the information instead of scanning, which is time-consuming and can lead to inaccuracies.
It is essential to test barcode scanners to ensure they are fully functional. So how do you test a barcode? Keep reading to learn more.
What Is A Barcode?
A barcode is a code in parallel lines and numbers that a machine can read. The parallel lines often vary in width, and this code is commonly printed on a commodity and is used as a means of stock control. You can find barcodes on products sold in convenience stores, supermarkets, and other ubiquitous stores. Typically, a barcode has bars and spaces read using a barcode scanner.
Benefits Of Using Barcodes
Barcodes have been in use for an extended period, making running a business more efficient.
They are also incredible tools for reducing errors and managing costs. Here are the benefits of using barcodes:
– Efficient: Barcodes allow more accurate and faster recording and transfer of information, ensuring the process is accurate and quick. You can spend a lot of time tracking down the location of materials and assets. However, barcodes can speed up the process and enhance the tracking of your items from where you are, saving you time.
– Reduce errors: Data entry and clerical data can bring your business irreparable damage and even bring about legal ramifications. Irreparable damage may include a lot of time spent tracking items, unhappy customers and higher freight costs. On the other hand, barcode scanners offer you more accuracy, reducing the chance of making an error.
– Time-saving: When well-implemented, barcode scanners can help you save a significant amount of time depending on their application. For instance, barcode scanners are much faster than having individuals do it manually when it comes to inventory. Using a barcode scanner is not only time saving, but also ensures that you need fewer people to do the work.
– Reduced employee training time: You can reduce the time spent on training employees by employing a barcode system. Doing so also lowers your expenses when training employees.
– Inexpensive: Barcodes are reasonably affordable to design and print regardless of where you affix them or their purpose. You can customise them economically with a range of materials and finishes.
How To Test A Barcode: Step-By-Step
It is essential to conduct a barcode test. Here is the step-by-step guide on how to test a barcode:
– Standards and symbologies: You must understand the standards you need to stick to, such as ISO and GS1. To get the correct verifier, it is also essential to understand the symbologies you are testing, like UPC or QR codes.
While a significant number of barcodes on consumer products are 1D, there are also 2D barcodes. With that in mind, consider getting a verifier that can work on both 1D and 2D barcodes.
– Use a verifier: Ensure you get a barcode verifier as only using software will not suffice. Verifiers are the only thing with the necessary optics to give you calibrated grade results.
– Develop a system: You need to set up a system to test the barcode in place. The system you create should be part of your regular operating procedure. Therefore, ensure you regularly and consistently verify the codes and plan corrective action should the barcodes fail. This means determining the cause of failure and ensuring the printing process is back on track.
– Test at your printing press: consider checking the barcodes ‘pre-press’ as it allows you to rectify any issues because you cannot correct them during production. You should also check the barcodes during the printing press.
– Random and continuous sampling: Determine whether random or in-line sampling is the best decision for you. Often barcode testing is performed on a sampling basis, where you periodically check at predetermined increments. For instance, if you are testing consumer packaging, you can do it every 20 minutes.
– Continuous testing: You must understand that barcode testing is a never-ending process. That is the best way to test a barcode and ensure it effectively works.
Verifying the barcode continuously and controlling the process ensures your codes scan and print the right way.
Always test your barcodes first before producing them in bulk. Doing so gives you a chance to fix any issues. Barcodes often fail for a reason, so it is vital to keep testing the codes regularly and continuously to ensure that they can scan correctly every time.
It would be best to test your barcodes with the help of professionals. Are you looking for barcode readers? ASP Microcomputers can help with customised solutions to help your business. This includes Inventory Management, Portable Barcode Readers, Supply Chain Management, Time and Attendance and Asset Tracking to name but a few.