Barcode Inventory Software
Barcode inventory software identifies products with a barcode scanner so warehouses can count them quickly while minimizing human error. Inventory managers employ barcode software for moving, picking and tallying large quantities of products. Barcodes come in handy for receiving shipments, stock takes, packing orders, shipping orders and stock transfers.
Finale Inventory offers a comprehensive, out-of-the-box barcode inventory management software solution to increase warehouse productivity and inventory count accuracy. With our integrated barcode system, easy-to-use and implement software, extensive training and technical support, Finale Inventory addresses all your mobile barcode inventory management needs. Finale Inventory allows your business to:
- Reduce picking errors.
- Locate products quickly by providing bin and shelf information.
- Eliminate the need for paper in the warehouse.
- Smoothly onboard and train new team members on the software’s easy-to-use, intuitive interface.
Setting up a barcode system for inventory management can drastically improve your stock keeping efficiency and accuracy. Labeling your products with barcodes lets you store information that can then be retrieved by a mobile barcode scanner. It allows your inventory tracking software with a scanner to do all the double-checking and hard work for you. Barcode inventory control software is exponentially more accurate than even your top-performing staff members.
The system is a turnkey solution and can be installed without a team of expensive integration consultants. Getting the system up and running is quick and simple.
Finale Inventory’s Barcode Process
Barcode warehouse management software can accelerate crucial operations related to storing inventory and fulfilling orders. Finale Inventory’s barcode program has four functions, including:
- Receiving: All the items that arrive in your warehouse need to be entered into your software. When you have barcode integration, recording this data is simple. Scan the barcodes that come with the products from the supplier, or create your own labels to use in-house. As your receivers scan in items, Finale Inventory will check them against the corresponding purchase order. The scanner will let workers know when they’ve received all the products and flag anything unexpected.
- Picking: Finale Inventory offers four ways to use the picking functionality. Use our scanners for basic, unguided discrete picking for one order at a time. Or, try our basic directed picking to guide your pickers throughout the warehouse. The software can also be set to handle wave picking or pick and pack operations for batch fulfilment options. Whatever picking method is best for your process, Finale Inventory makes it simpler with barcode scanning.
- Manual stock takes: When counting and logging items by hand, your team could make mistakes. Finale Inventory’s stock take functions allow you to conduct basic cycle counts and stock audits using the barcode scanner. In the stock take setting, your team members will first scan the barcode for the sublocation, followed by the items in that location. Finale Inventory will check the scans against the expected count to verify accuracy. When something doesn’t match, Finale Inventory will update your quantity on hand to the confirmed number.
- Stock transfer: Moving stock between locations is part of keeping your warehouse organized. You must log stock transfers so you don’t misplace any items, and your barcode scanners know how to direct pickers to the products later. To transfer stock, your staff members scan the original sublocation, followed by the new sublocation. Then, they’ll scan all the items you’re moving. When they sync the scanner with Finale Inventory, the software will update with the new location information.
Examples From Finale Inventory
One way barcode scanner inventory software speeds up operations is through receiving shipments. Watch how Finale Inventory uses the receive shipment function on a barcode scanner and reconciles the received shipment against a purchase order. You can scan the barcodes printed on your supplier’s product or create your own custom barcodes as you receive shipments.
What Is Barcode Inventory Software?
If you subscribe to Finale Inventory’s Bronze or Silver tier, you know inventory software alone boosts your efficiency and saves time. Tasks that once took hours are cut down to a few minutes. Inventory software will calculate your inventory levels in real time based on purchase orders, received orders, sales data and customer shipments. Despite these improvements, without a barcode reader, you’re still logging much of this information manually. You have to type in the sublocations where you place your products and mark shipments as received or sent in the system.
A barcode inventory system software lets you track all your operations while you’re on the move at your warehouse. When you perform any inventory operations, you log your data with a flick of the wrist and a few simple scans. One study of barcode warehouse technology in the printing and packaging industry revealed incredible operational improvements. According to the report, barcodes reduce labor intensity, decrease storage costs and increase inventory management efficiency.
A barcode inventory solution will offer integration with your existing inventory software along with scanner hardware. You’ll also need a labeling system. Some companies register Universal Product Codes (UPCs). In that case, Finale Inventory can act as your UPC inventory software. Other businesses use product IDs or let their inventory system assign barcode numbers for them. Some labeling systems will even account for lot IDs or serial numbers. Finale Inventory works with any labeling system you choose.
Benefits of Barcode Inventory Software With Finale Inventory
Finale Inventory is your go-to solution for barcode stock management. Our barcode inventory tracking software is feature-rich and flexible. Whatever hardware, labeling system or scanning process works best for your business, we can accommodate it. Our simple inventory software with barcode scanner integration offers many benefits, including:
- Simple label creation: Finale Inventory allows you to log information about your inventory using the barcodes printed by your supplier. If you need custom barcodes for your sublocations or stock, we make it simple to design and print barcodes. Using our barcoding software, create barcodes using your UPCs, product IDs or short codes assigned by Finale Inventory. We also offer barcode label customization, letting you configure barcodes to any layout and integrate your branding.
- Flexible hardware: Finale Inventory’s barcode software is hardware-agnostic. We offer integrations with most barcode scanners and an app that turns any Android smartphone into your barcode hardware. We can integrate our system with any brand of barcode reader you prefer.
- Quick implementation: Changing over from a manual inventory system or adding barcode integration should be painless and efficient. Finale Inventory prioritizes ease-of-use and simple setup. We let you integrate barcode inventory tracking in a matter of days. We offer free setup, consulting and training with all paid plans, so you can get up and running quickly.
- Helpful customer support: Your Finale Inventory personalized support representative strives to develop solutions for your unique business. We create personalized solutions for every customer. Our adaptive software integrates with your existing technology and can meet all your process requirements through customization. We have a library of how-to videos, a detailed help center and a helpful team that’s responsive to service requests.
- Scalable architecture: Implementing a barcode inventory system is a sign of growth. Barcodes are crucial for an expansive inventory managed by a growing team. Finale Inventory recognizes your need for scalability as your business grows. We offer multi-warehouse support to all customers, while our largest plan can accommodate up to 300 users and 1 million orders per month. We make it easy to add new users to your subscription, so you can scale incrementally as your team grows.
Using a Scanner for Order Fulfillment
Picking orders is by far the most labor-intensive operation in the warehouse. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. employed 178,270 stock clerks and order fillers in 2019. Compare that to the 56,820 shipping and receiving clerks, and you can see just how time-consuming the process is. As a result, human error can be common during the order picking process.
Order picking is also the activity that plays the biggest role in customer satisfaction with the warehouse. Getting picks correct ensures your customers receive the products they order so you can avoid returns. Since 15%-40% of online purchases get returned, improving picking accuracy is a critical step towards boosted profit margins and efficiency.
Leveraging a scanner and barcode picking software for order fulfillment operations improves your order filling accuracy and warehouse efficiency. When manually picking orders, anything from a change in packaging, similar-looking items or an inexperienced worker may trigger the wrong merchandise to ship with a sales order.
When using a barcode scanner for order picking, your pickers can view the items to pull on their mobile device as they travel throughout the warehouse. The scanner will display the items needed and prompt pickers to scan each item they pick. It will alert the user if they add an incorrect item and notify them when the entire sales order or batch has been picked. These functions help reduce instances of sending mispicks and incomplete orders to customers.
When each barcode is scanned, your inventory software will update your inventory records, removing the corresponding items from your quantity on hand. If your warehouse has a reliable Wi-Fi connection, your barcode scanners will update the stock counts in real time. Or, run picking operations with a USB-cable scanner. When the picking tasks are complete, simply connect the scanner to a computer to sync your software.
Your Finale-compatible scanner can function using four picking methods to suit your needs. As your business evolves, you can change your fulfillment option.
Basic Picking Methods
When first starting to fulfill online retail orders, many small businesses opt to pick orders one by one. A basic fulfillment process involves scanning paper pick lists for each order and gathering items one at a time. The staff member packs and ships the order and then starts with the next order’s pick list.
This basic picking procedure is known as discrete picking and shipping. It is the most often-used fulfillment approach among small e-commerce stores. While not as efficient as other methods, this option offers simplicity.
In Finale Inventory, we provide two ways to organize basic picking with your barcode scanner.
Under the basic simple mode, Finale Inventory will use a single sales order. Your order fillers will first scan the barcode on a sales order to tell your barcode reader which items to pick. The barcode reader won’t say which items to grab or where they’re located. Instead, your pickers will select the items listed from the printed sales order or pick list.
When they scan all the items included in the sales order, the barcode reader will indicate the order is complete. Basic simple mode then lets employees review the order to see what is included. If they scan an incorrect item, they’ll be reminded to undo the transaction and find the correct item.
Directed mode offers increased efficiency over simple picking. In the directed setting, the barcode stock scanner will still display one order at a time. Unlike with the simple mode, it will list the items needed one by one, alongside the picker’s current location within the warehouse and the item’s sublocation and quantity. It will direct staff to pick from sublocations in alphabetical and numeric order and move throughout the warehouse in the most efficient direction.
When pickers use the directed mode, they don’t need to review a paper sales order to see the items for their order.
Advanced Batch Picking
Up to 70% of a picker’s order-picking time is spent traveling. As a result, picking orders one by one under the basic configuration quickly becomes inefficient. Once a business begins to receive more orders, they might choose a batch picking process to reduce travel time. While there are several batch-picking strategies, the basic workflow is straightforward. Instead of moving through orders one at a time, a warehouse picker will collect similar orders into batches. By combining orders into a single set, the time spent walking through the warehouse is greatly diminished.
Instead of fulfilling one order per trip, your pickers will pick a group of orders in the same travel time. Warehouses may handle batch picking in two ways — using either wave picking or pick and pack.
When wave picking, your pickers will travel around the warehouse with a mobile cart. The cart will have a set of bins, each representing an individual order. In the Finale Inventory barcode integration, we refer to these as slots to distinguish from the bin sublocations you might have in your warehouse.
When using the wave picking function in Finale Inventory, pickers use barcode scanners to assign a sales order to each slot on the cart. They’ll first scan the order ID, followed by the slot’s barcode. They will scan an order ID for every slot they need to fill and begin wave picking. Just like with the directed basic mode, the mobile barcode scanner will tell them which sublocation to go to for each item needed, followed by the slot it belongs to.
Pick and Pack
The pick and pack method uses a similar process to wave picking. The difference is that after a picker completes a batch, the items will be handed off to another employee who will pack and ship the order. Instead of separating orders into slots, the picker will collect all the items needed from the batch of orders. They’ll then be handed off to a packer, who will separate the items into their individual orders and pack them for shipment.
To perform pick and pack in Finale Inventory, your picker will scan each sales order in your batch. Your barcode scanner will direct staff through the warehouse for all the items in the batch. When all the items are scanned in, the barcode reader will prompt the picker to enter a packing sublocation. The picker will scan the packing location’s barcode to let the software know where all the items have been moved to.
The employee responsible for packing the orders in the packing area can then take over. Your packer will scan the packing slips within the batch, and the barcode reader will prompt staff to pack the orders one by one.
Contact Us for a Free Trial or Real-Time Demo
Finale inventory offers a comprehensive, integrated mobile barcoding solution as part of our software subscription plans of Gold and above. Our solution is simple to set up and easy to use. We work with any industry, as Finale Inventory is a barcode system for small businesses and Fortune 500 companies alike. Take your inventory management to the next level with barcode-enabled software.
If you want to test out our barcode features for yourself, contact us or sign up for a free 14-day trial and download the Finale Inventory barcode scanner app to your Android smartphone. If you like it, feel free to upgrade to a dedicated barcode scanner device of your choice, or keep scanning using the app.