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As one of the world’s largest retailer-owned hardware cooperatives, True Value represents independent retailer locations in over 60 countries with retail sales in their communities totaling about $5.5 billion with 13 regional distribution centers and approximately 2,500 True Value Associates.

Challenge

In 2013, True Value implemented a streamlined receiving process which utilized supplier generated Advanced Ship Notices (ASN) and GS1-128 Shipping labels on pallets.   One of challenges for this project was to coordinate several internal groups at True Value to ensure stakeholders understood the impact and expecations.

Solution

Due to the nature of True Value’s business model and established business practices, Bar Code Graphics first task was to create True Value’s GS1-128 and GTIN barcoding requirements.  We delivered a straightforward barcode section which was integrated within True Value’s Supplier Requirements.  Our objective was to create requirements which were aligned with the GS1 General Specifications and would facilitate supplier compliance.  Additionally, we developed a certification program which was embedded within True Value’s EDI Testing program and provided suppliers with a very simple EDI & GS1-128 Certification process.

Our work on this project included;

  • Authoring new GS1-128 barcode guidelines which are harmonized with the GS1 General Specifications and provide suppliers a blue print to facilitate compliance
  • Establishing a certification program for each GS1-128 label formate for each supplier ship location.
  • Implementing an education initiative within supplier compliance for GS1-128 lab infractions and consequential re-certification program.

Results

 

In less than 1 year, Bar Code Graphics and True Value certified their entire supplier community of more than 2000 suppliers for both Advanced Ship Notices (856) and GS1-128 Certification.  The use of both EDI and Shipping labels has dramatically reduced time and labor in receiving shipments at True Value’s Distribution Centers.

  • UPC (GTIN-12)

  • ISBN/Books

  • Medical/UDI

  • Supply Chain

  • Assets/Inventory

  • Coupon

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UPC (GTIN-12)

There are a variety of different types of barcodes. However, the UPC (Universal Product Number) symbol is the most recognized barcode in the United States, since it appears on almost every retail product. The UPC symbol is the barcode representation of the GTIN-12 which consists of twelve numeric characters that uniquely identify a company’s individual product. The GTIN-12 number is part of the family of GS1 global data structures that employ 14 digits and can be encoded into various types of data carriers.

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ISBN/Books

A requirement for selling a book through booksellers, wholesalers, and distributors is the assignment of unique ISBN numbers for each title and for each book to be marked with a Bookland EAN barcode.

The Bookland symbol allows for encodation of ISBNs (the numbers publishers use to identify their products). Since an ISBN is unique to one particular title (or product), the corresponding Bookland EAN symbol is a title-specific marking which is unique for that title. For example, if a title is available in hard cover, soft cover and as an e-book, three unique ISBN Bookland EAN bar codes are required.

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Medical/UDI

The FDA UDI Mandate is part of a comprehensive healthcare traceability initiative to improve patient safety.  The Unique Device Identifier (UDI) requirement is rooted in holding each member of the supply chain responsible for ensuring each medical device is marked with a UDI barcode with data maintained on the FDA’s GUDID universal database.

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Supply Chain

Logistic barcodes such as the GS1-128 Shipping Label are used to track movement of a shipment within a supply chain.  Since suppliers are making shipments to a variety of trading partners it is essential to integrate the relevant standards and current technology.  The use of EDI and 2D barcodes which can encode much more data has transformed many supply chains.

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Assets/Inventory

The first step in designing an asset tracking system is to determine whether you are working with assets or inventory.  Assets are any items a company uses internally such as tools, equipment, furniture etc.  Inventory are items which are sold, distributed or used by a company.  The distinction between Assets and Inventory is essential in regards to how the items will be marked, scanned and stored.

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Coupon

The successful integration of GS1 DataBar Coupons has dramatically improved many promotions.  The interhent features including; value codes and automatic expiration date checking for retailers, has enabled more efficient redemption, much better security and better metrics to measure the performance of a campaign.

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Bar Code Graphics

Bar Code Graphics