In the competitive paper industry, the ability of wholesale operators to manage inventory, avoid waste and provide timely delivery, is the key to success. The Robert Horne Group, who are one of the UK's largest paper, board and plastics merchants, are leaders in the use of technology to achieve these goals. Key to their success are Imaje MP Thermal Compact mobile printers supplied by Blazepoint used in conjunction with radio based Psion Teklogix data capture systems.
Robert Horne carries about 12,000 stock lines in their 300,000 sq ft Northampton national distribution centre. This includes everything from copier paper, standard coated ranges and premium coated to plastics for signage. They have a stock movement of around 3000 pallets a day and complete about 4000 picks with 50 percent of orders being placed after 3pm for next day delivery.
Incoming materials must be added quickly to the inventory and placed in store for easy identification and retrieval. Orders from clients need to be picked from store and the mixed goods packed for shipment. All receipts and despatches are logged for effective inventory management, avoiding stock-outs and ensuring that capital is not tied up in excess stock or slow moving lines.
The Imaje MP thermal printers, used with Psion Teklogix inventory management, play a key role. All bulk inbound stocks are barcoded using the MP Thermal to produce barcodes for the palletised or carton material. This barcode is then scanned by the Psion Teklogix system and data transmitted wirelessly to the computer so that the material is added to inventory.
As orders are made up, the reverse process takes place. Orders are keyed into the system, availability is confirmed and stock is allocated from inventory. As pallets are opened and cases removed a new barcode is issued from the Imaje MP Compact Mobile printer on the forklift truck. This again communicates by radio to the computer to confirm that stock has been physically removed.
When the order is assembled and shrink-wrapped to pallet, a further barcode is issued and scanned confirming completion. The system then generates despatch notes and raises the invoice.
Robert Horne has used MP printers since 1991. The original equipment was from Markpoint of Sweden - now an integral part of the worldwide Imaje operation. Printer usage is intensive and the reliability was such that the company again selected MP Thermal printers in 2001, making this the standard printer for the whole site. The company currently use 33 printers, six at static locations and 27 mobile units on pick up. Equipment was supplied via Imaje resellers Blazepoint of Oxford who are print and integration specialists.
Competition in the paper supply chain is not going to get easier. Robert Horne has clearly shown that operations can become more efficient by the use of advanced, but robust barcoding technology.
More information: Karen Gibson, Imaje UK Ltd, Tel. +44 (0)1928 599 420 Fax. +44 (0)1928 599 425 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.imaje.co.uk
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August 14, 2003
Additional notes to editor:
Imaje are the worlds leading manufacturer of coding and marking solutions and are part of the Dover Corporation with an annual turnover of $4,500m. Imaje offer a total solutions package that includes laser marking (vector and dot matrix machines), continuous ink jet printing, large character outer case coding, and print and apply labelling. As companies are seeing the benefits of networking coding and marking, Imaje are also offering a complete auto coding network package.
The Robert Horne Group includes the following operating companies: The Robert Horne Paper Co, Robert Horne Business Papers, Glenmore Business Papers, Cox Plastics, A&P Display, and Paragon Imaging Materials.
Blazepoint has over 20 years experience in the supply, installation and support of printer and peripheral solutions. Today Blazepoint boasts an in-house product engineering capability for the design, development testing and manufacture of computer peripherals to meet individual customer needs.
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