Barcode Compliance Excuses

“Excuses, excuses”

A supplier receives an offset for non-scannable barcode shipping labels. “It’s not our fault,” they say, “the company that printed the labels for us is responsible.” “It’s not our fault,” the printing company says, “we received bad stock from the printing supply company.” “It’s not our fault,” says the supply company, “our stock manufacturer needs to sort this out.”  The barcode compliance excuses go on and somewhere down the line, someone is blaming their kindergarten teacher.

barcode compliance excuses

In the world of logistics, EDI, and barcode labeling there are countless third-party solutions and providers that can assist your company. These are a great way to outsource tasks to a company that specializes in them. The problem is you can’t outsource responsibility.

In our experience, companies will contract with a third party and take an “out of sight, out of mind” approach to ensuring barcode compliance. Few suppliers realize what a big risk this is until the compliance notifications arrive. With offsets ranging from $5 to $12 per carton, the financial risk cannot be understated and is probably what receives the most focus.

But in the scheme of things – regardless of which third party or material supplier is to “blame” – being on a trading partner’s radar as a problem supplier is damaging in its own right. Since it is your name on the product and your reputation.

Steps for Better Barcode Compliance

Material Providers

  • Discuss your material needs with your provider. Label stock and other printing materials need to be suited for the supply chain environment.
  • Ask about alternatives. It is really on your company to predict and prevent material issues.
  • What checks does your provider have in place to ensure consistency in materials?
  • What checks do you have in place to ensure consistency in materials?

Supplier Printed EDI integrated labels

  • If label files are being created by a third party and printed by you, have you received thorough instruction on how to print the labels compliantly?
  • What checks do you have in place to ensure print quality? How frequently are labels being verified?

Third Party Printing

  • What checks does the third party have in place to ensure print quality? Were labels printed on their system verified?
  • How prepared is the third party to deal with inevitable printing issues? Do they have spare print heads in stock? Do they reprint labels they know to be bad?

Third Party Logistics

  • What training is in place to ensure correct label placement?
  • What steps are taken to ensure shipments and labels are protected from abrasion and harsh conditions?

Remember – “the buck stops here”. If Bar Code Graphics and our label testing division Identification Labs can offer any assistance, please contact us at, 800-662-0701 x310, and


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