With further development in technology, human civilization is becoming more and more advanced. Leading to a rise in demand & the subsequent production of goods and services. This creates the problem of the supply chain not being fast enough to keep up with the demands. Many manual operations like asset identification & tracking require manual inputs which can only be optimized up to a certain degree.
That is why businesses have started to automate these processes. One such operation is automating label printing for barcodes. So, the printing machines can directly communicate with the production department and coordinate the printing operations for goods produced.
Let’s discuss more about this.
What is Barcode Printing Automation?
As the name suggests, this is the process of completely automating barcode printing operations. Generally, such operations require human data input and authorization to start the printing process. However, in production lines with large volumes of goods, it becomes increasingly difficult to accurately conduct these operations.
With increasing volume, the chances of errors also increase. Therefore, businesses create a system where the printing database is directly connected to the ERS (Enterprise Resource Management System), i.e., the production line. This allows the two to communicate and automate the printing process without the need for human input.
Components Required to Automate Label Printing
Before setting up an automated printing operation, you need to know the components you will need to set it up. There will be an initial rise in cost, however, in the long run, this system will decrease your cost of operations and improve productivity.
First, you will need to set up the hardware infrastructure for automated printing. This includes a barcode printer. For large-volume operations that require automation, you will probably require an industrial printer. These printers can create a large volume of labels with sharp image quality.
The next thing you require is computer units. These units allow communication between the software and the printers. In order to establish this communication, users will also need to implement a network system that carries data from one system to another.
Now comes the second aspect of such systems, the software. The software allows users to communicate with and operate machines. Applications like ERP (Enterprise Resource Management Systems) or WMS (Warehouse Management Systems), businesses to manage their operations and create a database of all the resources and products.
After that, users will need custom printing automation software. That is where IT solution providers like us step in. Our team of skilled developers can easily create custom software tailored to fit your business. This software communicates with the ERS and collects the input data from the database. Then proceed to initiate print jobs automatically.
How to Automate Label Printing?
Once you get all the components in place you will need to set up the automation system. In order to do that, first connect all the systems through a common network like Wi-Fi or cables. Set up the ERS system to collect operations in the database regarding your operations.
Then, with the help of our developers and training, you can connect the APS (Automated Printing System) to the ERS or WMS. Configure the APS to collect information from the ERS and automatically create custom print jobs. Then create a template for the labels and set the software to automatic print.
The APS will now automatically collect data from the business management software, create custom print jobs according to the template, and give the printer the instruction to start printing.
Frequently Asked Question
Q1. Do label printers come with software?
Depending on the printer and brand, your unit may come with printing software from the manufacturers. However, for some printers, users need to purchase or license custom barcode printing software from a third-party developer.
Q2. What are the 2 types of label printers?
There are multiple ways to classify different types of label printers, based on printing techniques, you can primarily differentiate printers into two classes. These are inkjet and thermal printing.
Inkjet printers, use tiny, nanometre-sized nozzles to spray a stream of ink on top of labels to create the image. Thermal printers, on the other hand, use heated pinheads to create prints on custom-label papers.
Q3. Do I need software to print labels?
Yes, in order to operate any hardware, users require software. Label printing software allows users to create custom print jobs.
- Last updated on Jul 07, 2023