Customer Case Study

The first Kohls department store debuted in Wisconsin in1962.  As of February 2013, Kohls has become the second largest US department store in terms of retail sales, and is the 20th largest retailer in the United States. Kohls operates 1,160 stores across 49 US states, surpassing various other chains. Kohls is renowned for its broad selection of apparel, accessories, shoes, electronics, home products and more offered at competitive prices.



Kohls established EDI transactions and internally managed supplier enablement.  As their nine distribution centers became reliant on efficient receipt of 856 advanced ship notices, their dependence on compliant supplier GS1-128 labels increased.  Although their in-house enablement team successfully assisted suppliers with the electronic transactions, their supply chain was still experiencing GS1-128 carton labels to read the first time in their scanning environment.


Although Kohls relied on a third party solution to record and manage vendor compliance issues, barcode shipping label compliance was not providing their suppliers assistance on correcting problems.



Following a model successfully implement by other comparable retailers, Bar Code Graphics established a program to enable Kohls suppliers the resources to comply with their GS1-128 labels and also support supply chain disruptions.


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.




Today, Kohls supplier compliance and logistic departments now rely on Bar Code Graphics to address all GS1-128 label issues.  GS1-128 label certification through Bar Code Graphics is integrated with vendor on-boarding and existing suppliers are now proacrtively re-certifying shipping labels whenever they make changes to their hardware, software or print media.  Barcode re-certification is also tied directly to GS1-128 compliance infractions so suppliers can rapidly correct mistakes and reduce providing Kohls supply chain with non-compliant shipping labels.