Ceramika Color cooperates with chains of construction and interior design stores, it also has many own wholesale partners. More than one-third of the products are sold to customers abroad. It was retail chains, as well as other customers, who “forced” changes in the organisation of storage and distribution.
Ceramika Color is a company with a seventeen-year history, for ten years it has been a part of a group with Polish-Italian capital, which includes companies producing, among others, wall tiles, gres tiles and granulate for the production of gres tiles. The purpose of implementing new solutions modifying logistics at the manufacturer was, among others, to introduce a standard of labelling in accordance with GS1 and automation of labelling. All this to speed up operations, improve storage and distribution of the product range.
The standard for labelling logistics units in accordance with GS1 was implemented in the production plant in Końskie, and the task was entrusted to SKK.
In the first stage of the project:
– installation of operator’s label printing stations (application with GS1 certificate of conformity), integrated with the ERP system, was created
– an insular radio network was constructed
– WMS system was implemented, using SKK Smart mobile application (application with GS1 certificate of compliance)
In the next stage of the project, the following were carried out:
– installation of automatic labelling systems integrated with production automatics (a line with the palletizers and conveyors) – applying GS1 logistic labels in three plants
– expansion of the radio network and transition to mobile work online
– implementation of WMS in two plants
2D Datamatrix bar code contains additional data
The implementation of the logistics label GS1 in CC is distinguished by the use of the 2D Datamatrix bar code. The 2D label is a carrier of additional information, including the company product code and product name.
This means that all information about the contents of the pallet and the characteristics of the goods is available without communication with the home system.
The use of GS1 labels with a unique SSCC number ensures full traceability of logistic carriers from their formation, through in-house turnover and storage, loading, turnover in logistic centres, to delivery to the end customer,” said Paweł Knap, warehouse and project manager.
What are the benefits of using GS1 labels? Agata Horzela, GS1 standards manager at TSL, in an article for Trans.info, stressed that just as a barcode is a source of information about a product, a logistic label should be a source of information about the content of a given pallet. However, the difference between the labelling of products and pallets is fundamental.
Currently, only less than 10% of companies in Poland use standard pallet designations. The vast majority of the labels used are internal solutions that are in no way connected with other partners in the supply chain and serve only their creators,” writes Agata Horzela.
The use of non-standard labels means that subsequent customers create their own internal solutions and stick additional labels on the logistics unit.
This situation is becoming increasingly onerous and supply chain participants are increasingly aware of the need for standardisation.
You apply the standard – you can benefit from lower costs
The standard logistics label GS1 is being implemented by more and more retail chains, thus motivating their suppliers to use it. It was the retailers who were the first to see the benefits of standardised pallet labelling. The GS1 logistics label is one of the basic tools used for labelling and monitoring the flow of cargo – transport units, through which companies (manufacturer, wholesaler, retailer, distributor, carrier, logistics operator) communicate information in a standardised way that is understandable everywhere in the world.
Using GS1 standards as an integral part of their services, logistics operators can easily unify and automate the receipt of information and fully integrate with their customers.
The use of a standard logistics label brings a number of benefits to the chain. Production companies, in addition to meeting the requirements of retail chains, can quickly and flexibly adapt to a number of other external customers based on GS1 standards thanks to the use of standard labels. In addition, the same labels can be used to improve their own warehouse processes, such as receipts, picking and releases. A manufacturer using standard pallet labels may, in the case of some logistics operators, count on lower distribution costs in comparison with companies not using standards.