Asset tracking – it’s about quality AND quantity

Oct 17 2014

We know that keeping on top of your assets, especially when you have a high volume across multiple locations, can be challenging. Tracking them and carrying out an audit can be no easy feat!

If you don’t already, barcoding your assets can really help to transform your asset tracking and audit process. Being able to quickly pull up all data held about an asset can significantly improve time management, accuracy and efficiency.

When it comes to barcodes, companies have to decide whether to print them in-house or choose a professional provider to supply them.

At RAM, we believe that when it comes to printing barcodes for your assets, you shouldn’t have to compromise on the quality of your labels in order to achieve the quantity you need – the two go hand in hand and you can have both. To prove this, we’ve pulled together a comprehensive list of what professional printing for barcodes can bring over producing them on an in-house printer, and what companies need to bear in mind when making the choice:

One barcode system fits all – having a single asset register and one barcode system that links all departments together can help to streamline the audit process, making it easier at year end because you don’t have to merge lots of data. It also provides you with full visibility of your assets, as well as a snap shot if needed, allowing companies to also make quick decisions on what maintenance work has been done and what work still needs to be done. Also, using multiple in-house barcode systems across each department can be hard to manage and is not as cost effective as having just one central system linked to one asset register. A professional provider, who will also be likely to provide your asset register, is able to store details of your numbering sequence and can automatically send you the next number on your list; reducing any risk of duplicating barcode numbers.

Standing the test of time – the ink used in printing barcodes is important - you don’t want to find that it starts to fade; making the barcode hard to scan. Barcodes should also be able to remain fixed to an asset if it’s being transported to different locations. The last thing you need is for labels to be easily removed or to lose their adhesion. If they do start to fade or become separated from your asset, you will have to print more of them, proving costly in the long-term. The better the quality of your labels, the less chance you will need to re-print them.

Error free with paper-free tracking – by having your barcodes professionally printed you can ensure that you are able to track assets electronically, rather than manually via a paper trail or on a spreadsheet. Companies can also enhance the accuracy of the data captured by removing the risk of human error, which can in turn save valuable time and money.

In need of more? – if you need more barcode labels printed due to an increase in the number of assets, having them professionally printed can add value. Most companies that offer a professional printing label service will be able to offer you a ‘bulk buy’ offer that will ensure you can achieve quality and quantity at a lesser cost.

RFID anyone? - Professionally printing tags can offer you the option of in built RFID chips. RFID tags have the added benefit of not requiring line of sight when scanning, which means companies can walk into a room, scan once, and pick up a room full of assets. Furthermore, as there is no need to physically scan the tag with a scanner, the actual tag itself can be embedded inside an asset, so that they are much more difficult to remove. Most in house printers can only offer the ability to print barcode labels (tags that you have to physically scan with a PDA), therefore by going professional, you can future proof your tags, and ensure the actual work involved with carrying out an audit, is minimised.

So, now we have shared all our tips with you if you have any questions on barcoding or are interested in RAM’s barcode and asset tracking software for your organisation then please visit our solutions page, email solution@realassetmgt.co.uk or give one of our friendly team a call on +44 (0)1689 892 137 to discuss the opportunity further.