Customer Case Study

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.


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.


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.



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.