As the amount of content (data, translations, images, etc.) and content versions required for labeling continues to increase, companies struggle with the question of where to house all of their content. Transactional and master data is most often sourced from ERP, WMS, SCM and PLM applications but many other elements that are used specifically for labels and packaging do not reside in these systems. However, these elements still need to be managed, reviewed and made available in real time for when labels are being printed to keep the supply chain moving optimally.
Enterprise labelingwith digital asset management functionality can also simplify the label design processes by providing access to pre-approved images and artwork, including regulatory items such as pictograms. A comprehensive phrase library can also be important for storing countless variations of translations offering a single source for all labeling content around the globe. At the end of the day, whether organization’s content is in an external system or in an enterprise labelingsystem, it is key to ensure that approved content is available for real time labeling. This will help mitigate risk, improve control and compliance, and reduce the overall labeling process complexity.
Extending labeling across the global supply chain
Businesses today are moving more of their IT infrastructures to the cloud and Software as a Service (SaaS) based deployments. This enables them to focus more on their core businesses, simplify maintenance, improve total cost of ownership and streamline their on-demand provisioning of hardware and software. Along with these benefits, a managed cloud deployment provides flexibility to scale and eliminates the need for extensive disaster recovery plans.
Cloud-based labeling simplifies maintenance and support, reduces cost and IT involvement and expands global use. However, cloud-based labeling must not sacrifice the flexibility, speed and print performance that are both essential to any labeling effort. This demonstrates the importance of deploying enterprise labelingSolutions that are built for cloud deployments, including remote printing capabilities that use native print drivers to optimize printing from the cloud.
Image courtesy: Loftware
With enterprise labelingthat can be deployed on premise or in the cloud across all locations and regions, accessing centralized data and leveraging business rules, operational efficiency accelerates.
What to look for
At its core, enterprise labeling offers a smarter, “enterprise-centric” approach to labeling. It offers the opportunity to:
Master all labeling variations – Changing customer requirements, changing regions, changing regulations and changing products all impact your labeling. These all must be met in a quick and efficient manner. enterprise labelinggives the power to master labeling variations by automating and applying user configurable business rules to your labeling processes. Dynamic labeling can maximize support for countless label combinations with minimum effort.
Meet customer requirements quickly - In today’s fast paced supply chain, it’s critical to be able to respond to customer labeling requirements quickly and efficiently on a global scale. Enterprise labelingenables business users to make label changes quickly and easily, allowing you to always stay in lock step with your customers’ labeling demands.
Enable regulatory compliance - Enterprise labelingenables compliance by dynamically generating the right labels that include the correct formats, barcodes, logos, languages, industry- specific warnings, and product information.
Integrate labeling with enterprise applications - Integrating labeling with existing business applications allows you to leverage your existing business processes and ‘sources of truth’ for label data. Certified integration facilitates automatic labeling to improve efficiency and accuracy and avoid costly mislabeling. Eliminate data duplication, streamline maintenance needs and improve the bottom line.
Empower users to create and update labels - Enable business users to create and update labels instead of relying on costly IT resources. By using browser-based and WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) label design capabilities, organizations can improve the speed and efficiency of the label design process.
Empower users to create custom applications- Create browser-based applications to manage both labeling and non-labeling related business processes. Rather than creating offline or custom applications, design applications with drag and drop ease to make the development and maintenance of applications (often used for on demand printing) dramatically faster and easier.
Support high volume printing globally - As the speed of a firm’s operations increase it is key to print volumes of labels quickly and efficiently, regardless of printer or geography. Native printer drivers maximize performance, minimize network traffic, and vastly reduce the maintenance associated with Windows drivers.
Scale labeling with ease - As business expands, look for the flexibility to scale labeling to meet new business requirements. Whether it’s more locations, increased print volumes, new products, or complying with evolving regulations, corporate labeling standards must be met. Centralizing labeling helps maintain consistency, while enabling global locations to solve their unique needs.
Lean on labeling experts for success - When it comes to labeling, one size does not fit all. Labeling needs are unique whether it’s your industry, regulations, customers, processes, or business applications, just to name a few. Rely on labeling experts for best practices, industry specific knowledge, tailored service and support reducing the need for costly IT resources. Look for comparable experience designing, developing and implementing the right software solutions with companies in a similar industry to address the right business situations.
Significant efficiencies and cost savings can be found when adopting a single, unified approach to deal with customer, product, regulatory and regional complexities that impact both labeling and artwork management – whether it is on traditional packaging, online or in the supply chain.
EBN Dialogue enables you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Open to the entire EBN community of electronics supply chain experts, these conversations see ideas shared, comments made, and questions asked and answered in real time. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats. Stay tuned and join in!