Frequently Asked Questions

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How do I select the "right" equipment supplier?

Answer: The "Right Equipment Supplier" has a lot to do with how equipment is being purchased, who will be doing the implementation, and what the system requirements are. The greatest challenge is to select the "technology partner" that fits your needs. This has to do with your own companyís level of integration capability.

Software / Hardware Solution
If your company is going to be buying a software/hardware solution, it is important that the system provider has experience with the bar code related equipment that you will be using. Some suppliers have selected one equipment set while others provide the bar code and/or radio frequency data communications hardware provided by a variety of suppliers. It is most important that the software capabilities meet your system requirements and then that the bar code related hardware provides the human interface to the system.

Integration Services
Other companies may be buying integration services and will not be making modifications to the software. In this situation, it is extremely important that the supplier is familiar with the host system and the methods of interacting to it as well as having a functional understanding of the bar code reading and related equipment. Here again, some integrators have experience with a variety of bar code equipment suppliers while others have selected just one.

Self Integration
Finally, some companies will take care of their own integration and will be looking purely at the bar code related equipment as an item to be integrated into their system. In these situations, it is extremely important that the bar code provider, either a value-added reseller, distributor, or the manufacturer, has the support and capabilities to meet the requirements of your companyís integration team.

Supplier Evaluation
A good place to start on the supplier analysis is to contact the bar code equipment manufacturers who appear to have the type of equipment necessary for the system. If your company is going to be purchasing a software solution, your staff should request information about solution providers.

Next, it is important to identify and contact other users of the equipment or service provider. The questions to be asked of the user company will be based on the nature of the installation. Companies who are installing the equipment themselves should talk to others who did the same thing. They will want to know what level of support is available. Those purchasing integration services, as well as equipment, will want to know how the integrator performed in the delivery of the system and support during installation. If an entire system is being purchased, then the company will want to know the providerís system design capabilities as well as integration, installation, and training. Attached are worksheets that may be helpful in analyzing your equipment and system supplier. It is suggested that anyone purchasing this type of equipment or services start off by having a clearly written statement of their own system concept and goals. This is referred to as a System Description and an outline of the items that should be covered is also included.

Phone: 215.489.1722

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