Known for high quality, multi-color labeling, Labels West, in business since 1978, specializes in the production of self adhesive labels used primarily for product packaging. The company prints labels for the food and beverage, wine, and personal care industries. In a soft economy, the company was looking for ways to cut costs without impacting its ability to serve its customers.
There are hundreds of individual jobs processing through the Labels West plant at any one time. Each job involves several steps, and each step takes place in a unique location with the facility. Critical documents (drawing and specifications, for example) are housed in a small job folder that travels through the production process. The company’s employees were spending several hours each week searching for these folders when information needed to be added or modified, obviously a time-consuming task that needed to be simplified.
Finding a ResolutionLabels West began researching job tracking solutions that use barcode technology to track its jobs. What they needed was job data software that is specially designed for small to mid-sized fabricators/manufacturers. They came across and were interested in the CheckMate tracking system to solve the search problem and to automate the job tracking process. Dynamic Systems, Inc., a Washington software developer, specializes in data collection, and installed the job tracking program at the label converter.
Currently, about 25 employees actively use the software. A barcode is printed on the job and is scanned as it moves into a new location. Management is able to quickly locate the job folders using the “search” function of the software. This simple solution is saving 20 hours per week in labor for the company, which equates to over $15,000 annually. The software was paid for in less than 3 months – a great ROI.
Great for Customer ServiceBesides the labor cost savings, CheckMate’s reporting allows Labels West to manage the company’s job flow – they now know where a job is and how long it’s been there. It eliminates the need for employees to interrupt each other, thus slowing down production.
Along with improving efficiencies, they can respond more quickly and accurately to their customers’ questions about lead-times and expected complete dates. If a customer wants to know the status of a job, the answer is a click away. And knowing the exact location of a job increases their customers’ satisfaction.
Job Data includes the ability to record actual labor, parts and scrap against the jobs. The system installs on a Windows based PC, and is very easy to use.
“I would highly recommend this solution. It does exactly what it is supposed to do,” states John Shanley, owner at Labels West. “We are very pleased with CheckMate. It installed easily, is stable and the technical support is excellent.”
CheckMate JobData can be used as a stand-alone program or as part of the CheckMate Production Suite which includes:
• Sales Order Entry
• Stockroom Inventory Control
• Bill of Materials
• Manufacturing Orders
• Tooling Management