3 Ways Barcode Scanners Make Life Easier
Technology is great, and we all feel it changes our lives, making it easier and more efficient. For instance, when one is buying things at the grocery store, thanks to barcode technology, everything is now touch-and-go. Unfortunately, people don’t have enthusiasm to know how barcode scanners works when we use it daily.
Today, the busy marketplace needs to adopt an efficient system that will determine success over failure in the business. Obstacles such as human error, time-consuming operations and sophisticated data entry systems affect the day-to-day running of a business. Barcodes are a simple and inexpensive way of encoding information in a pattern that can be read by a machine. This simple system offers a quick fix to many business problems and transforms the data entry system.
How Barcode Scanner Works
Barcode scanners incorporate a technology that reads black-and-white zebra lines on products. Information is entered into a computer or checkout terminal and the process is completed very quickly. It is from this terminal that the product is identified immediately from the inventory’s database.
Barcodes come in two forms; 1D – and the rare but more versatile – 2D. 1D barcodes;
- commonly used on supermarket products
- organize information horizontally from left to right
- are limited to 20-25 characters
- they require minimal information to be encoded
2D codes, on the other hand;
- arrange information both horizontally and vertically, allowing more information to be encoded within a smaller space
- they can easily store up to 2,000 characters of data
- they require an image scanner to read
The barcode scanning process
- First of all, the scanning head shines an LED or laser light on the barcode.
- Light reflects off the barcode into a light-detecting electronic element known as a photoelectric cell. The white areas on the barcode reflect light more, while the black areas reflect least.
- The cell configures a pattern of on-off alternates, parallel to the black-and-white stripes.
- The scanner converts the on-off patterns into binary digits (zeros & ones) from an attached electronic circuit.
- A computer attached to the scanner sends binary digits do reflect the code.
The first idea that comes to mind when thinking about scanners is the supermarket’s check-out counter. That is a great example of its use, but barcode scanners have become a staple in people’s everyday life.
3 ways barcode scanners make life easier
Not many people are aware of how 2D barcode technology plays an important role in the healthcare industry. As a matter of fact, FDA issued a directive demanding machine-readable labels to be used on all medications.
According to a report, there are 44,000-98,000 deaths caused by medical errors in hospitals. In 2013, the National Patient Safety Goals set “identify patients correctly” after pushing the initiative for 10 years. The initiative calls for at least two patient identifiers to be used during blood samples or medication.
Medication errors such as wrong medicine delivery, administering wrong dosage, or wrong timing can be avoided by 2D barcode technology. Barcodes are used not only to identify inpatients but also to manage physical assets. It increases efficiency by allowing nurses to label unused medications. Nurses can safely re-label and re-use them and save the hospital money and resources.
The future of barcode scanners seems bright as new innovations keep coming up. What better way to teach the young masses how barcode scanners works than by actually using them in school?
There’s much more to education than just putting students and educators in one room. Whatever level of education it is, most institutions depend on expensive investments in purchasing IT equipment to teach students.
Schools spend millions of taxpayers’ money on technological investments which have to be accounted for. One way of doing this is using barcode scanners. This has seen more schools shifting to automated systems that reduce and eliminate losses caused by human error.
Using barcode scanners is the most affordable and flexible way for schools to turn to systems that provide transparency and accountability. Attaching barcodes to all assets allows teachers and administration to create a database to track the equipment. This makes it easier to avoid manual errors and ensure that every student received their learning devices. Barcode scanners also update all the information by scanning a label and reporting the status back to the cloud.
- Modern Business
Barcode scanners have played an important role in revolutionising e-commerce. Where would Amazon be without barcode technology? Barcodes have significantly boosted productivity. Businesses no longer write down UPC codes and manually update inventory whenever a client purchases an item. Business owners have the ability to make immediate changes in price and reduce training time for new employees. Error Windows are hard to tolerate when it comes to business. People often make mistakes due to human error. However, using barcode scanners to scan items is efficient for updating inventory and accounts for eliminating the error. After business owners understand how barcode scanners works, it becomes one of the best inventions they can discover. It improves business intelligence by tracking stock and making the tools of record easier to implement on a digital platform.
Reduce inventory management cost
In the case of inventory management, barcode scanners enable businesses to cut down on costs. It reduces the amount of time required to keep shelves stocked and as a result, reduces the carrying inventory cost. Significantly reduce asset losses, while maintenance and depreciation become an effective standard operation.
Barcode scanning eliminates human error and improves data integrity. Having accurate information in the configuration management database eliminates the mistakes of typing in a wrong asset tag or serial number.
The versatility of barcode scanning makes it cost effective for modern businesses to implement in their operations. In the long run, it increases productivity as it facilitates a short learning curve by reducing employee training time.