Over the past decade, many manufacturing companies across the country have been wise enough to upgrade to ERP systems as a means of improving their processes and streamlining their businesses overall. However, some may have adopted a few aspects of ERP software – such as automated time collection and shipment tracking – but not others. For this reason, making strides to implement initiatives like barcoding could go a long way toward improving a company's bottom line with relatively minimal effort up-front.

The most obvious benefit to NAV barcode scanning is that it gives companies a better idea of what they have on-hand at any given time, as well as a constantly evolving and changing picture of what they're going to need in the relatively near future, according to CIO Magazine. That, in turn, can help manufacturers avoid snags that might have otherwise cropped up in the production process as a result of issues like delayed deliveries or shipping backups on their end.

Taking the next step
When it comes to control, the good news is that ERP systems make each step of the process update somewhat automatically, the report said. Materials can be scanned on their way into a facility, and again when they are used so nothing will go missing. Meanwhile, new barcodes can be made for finished products that can be scanned into inventory and then out again when they're shipped.

Another tangible benefit
Indeed, when it comes to undertaking this kind of effort, it might be wiser for manufacturing decision-makers to think of adopting ERP systems and barcoding software as a sort of an investment that pays for itself by mitigating risks and making a company more efficient overall, according to a report from Supply and Demand Chain Executive Magazine. While each individual company might not feel it necessarily loses a lot as a result of misplaced shipments or materials, the combined impact of those losses is massive: about $50 billion annually.

The idea here is that by keeping closer tabs on materials and products at each step of the manufacturing process, the risk they'd be damaged or lost can drop significantly, the report said. Because it allows companies to more actively get a good look at what their needs are going to be weeks or even months down the road, it can help them plan for potential times of need when things do go awry.

The more executives can do to make sure they get a bird's eye view of as many aspects of their companies' operations as possible, the better the control they'll be able to exert over it. That, in turn, leads to more cost certainty, fewer losses, and – in the end – bottom lines that  improve by potentially significant amounts for manufacturers that adopt ERP.

For more information on improving efficiency with barcode technology, download the free white paper entitled "Keeping the Physical World and the Virtual World in Sync" from Insight Works.