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Solving complex warehouse data integrity issues for Shell

Supplier: insignia
18 September, 2013

Technology is a beautiful thing, especially in production warehouses and industries where large quantities and varieties of product are continuously identified and shipped to various parts of the nation as well as the world.

In the life of a lubricants warehouse, technology underpins its successful daily operations.

Of course, the right technology for the right environment will ensure smooth production. Another great thing about technology is that it is always improving on last year's concepts with a view to simplifying the complex issues of production.

This is all well and good, but what this means for those making mission critical systems decisions, is the problem of how to mesh and partner the different strands of technology to make their production lines flow like well-oiled machines. Unfortunately, initial decisions based on what was available at the time can become long-term headaches that can make total cost of ownership escalate instead of diminish. Data integrity is quite a significant problem and these issues can get more complex in time.

Brad Jeavons, Sales Manager for insignia was approached by Shell Oil with such a problem. They needed the knowledge and experience of a company who specialises in the complete process of printing and labelling to optimise software/hardware compatibility throughout their lubricant warehouses.

For their warehouse operations to flow smoothly with minimum breakdowns and callouts, they needed reliable label printing solutions that would eliminate future data integrity issues.

Jeavons supervised this project and in his words, "gaining the whole picture is the key to providing the right printing solution for each environment".

"Every warehouse is different and so there is not a 'one size fits all' solution when it comes to labelling application and printer needs. The whole picture always includes future plans for expansion as well as looking for the isolated stumbling blocks that can occur through underperforming hardware or software. insignia knows that there is no value in coming up with a quick fix that looks good on paper but cannot be sustained in the long term."

Because of their extensive knowledge of labelling solutions and decades of experience in printer systems, insignia was able to remove the blockages in the production process. For Shell, their once sluggish production lines are smooth running and free flowing, from the label design through to its application. This refining process included integrating the right software with the most efficient printer and was completed with insignia's full field service.

According to Jeavons: "The best and most proficient solution for Shell was to simplify the existing complex labelling software. The present complexity had the potential to cause excessive centralized data problems; not to mention the time-consuming management and maintenance that is needed to keep everything up and running."

Companies that are struggling to meet deadlines and shipping orders due to excessive downtime because of data integrity issues can benefit from the experience of a company like insignia. They offer full support and technical training for on-site operators and the maintenance teams as well as full prompt service and repair.

The best printing solution in this case was purchasing and installing Seagull Scientific BarTender Software to integrate with Datamax W-class printers. The flexibility of the BarTender software working with the reliable and durable Datamax W-Class printers means smooth-running production lines with limited downtime due to breakdown.

BarTender has been designed to overcome any problems in relation to managing complex software. This software is user-friendly and no IT degrees are necessary as there is no hard coding involved. BarTender is the leading true Windows barcode label software program. This professional label design and barcode software tool has powerful features for compliance labels and integration with enterprise software. It even supports RFID tags. Yet BarTender is so easy, it gets beginners designing in minutes.

BarTender software offers flexibility in the layout, design and setup of labels. The face of the labels can be quickly and easily changed, even the bar codes can be quickly placed anywhere on the label at the click of a mouse.

insignia's full field service means that all the relevant employees were fully trained in the use of this software and were able to take full advantage of all the features that come with it. This service ensures the correct integration of this software with the hardware – the reliable and durable Datamax W-class printer.

The modular Datamax W-Class wide label printer features more standard memory, a beefier processor, and the scalability required in today's connected workplace. W-Class label printers are constructed to endure the most intense industrial printing environment, with an all-metal chassis and heavy-duty metal exterior designed to protect a company's investment.

The Datamax label printer is famous for its simple to maintain and easy to use modularity. The cog-driven (no belts) printer leads the way in its design that incorporates tough casing with all removable parts easy to access and simple to remove. You don't need engineering qualifications, just a screwdriver. Although Datamax knows its printers are of the highest quality and reliablity, it offers an excellent and comprehensive warranty.

insignia was like a 'one stop' shop in this situation. Fully certified and trained in Datamax hardware as well as Zebra trained meant that they were able to expertly and successfully integrate Datamax reliability with labelling software.

The smooth transition to well-oiled efficiency was made complete by insignia's Field Service expertise.  insignia's service philosophy is to work closely with their customers in order to maximize system up times and maintain lifetime cost effectiveness. Trained, qualified and certified technicians delivered the necessary training so that full utilization was made of the BarTender Software in conjunction with the quality Datamax Printers provided.

Perhaps this story resonates with you. Data integrity issues, complex data management and excessive downtimes are familiar enough to send chills down your spine. When is comes to problems like these, it pays to call in the experts. Just remember, technology is a beautiful thing but only when is it the right technology for the right environment. Through their open and consultative approach, insignia can bring simple solutions to the most complex situations and may be the boost your production figures need.