jwolthuis - 1:59 pm on Aug 17, 2011 (gmt 0)
We have an automated system, like what you described. We wrote it ourselves. The automated system does *not* deliver the results you're after. It simply shifts the errors elsewhere.
Quick example: We have certain incoming inventory that does not have UPC/GTIN codes. We manually apply barcoded stickers to identify the stock. All too often, the person is in a hurry, eyesight isn't that great, chatty-Cathy with another employee, and stuff gets mis-labeled.
Result: The customer will order a 10-pound Blue Widget, and we'll ship a 2-pound Green Gadget, because the barcode matched.
When you automate, workers turn off their thinking caps, and learn to beat the automation.
You can see it in action everyday at Walmart (as an example). Buy six jars of something, and watch the checkout person scan one label six times.