Fresh from winning not only Sorting Centre Innovation of the Year but also the prestigious Supplier of the Year at the recent 2017 Postal Technology International Awards, Prime Vision have continued the impressive run of recent innovations with the launch of their new Barcode Reader solution.
After being approached by an international postal and logistics organisation experiencing increasing frustration with failed barcode reading, the R&D team at Prime Vision set about redefining the way these systems operated.
Senior Researcher Sjaak Koomen explained, “At the time the successful read-rate was around 95%, but this 5% failure-rate was having a massive effect on parcel volumes, resulting in greatly increased labour, delayed deliveries, customer dissatisfaction, and a sizable leakage in revenue”.
Prime Vision’s new solution has exceeded all industry expectations, reading an impressive 70% of the previously failed reads. This has taken the successful read-rate from 95% to 98.5%.
Sjaak explained the concept behind the new system. “We’re really proud of this innovation. The key lay in our approach. Rather then re-designing the bar-coding equipment, we changed the way the different components interacted, and crucially, how they thought. Our solution is built on the assumption that all printed barcodes did not comply with industry specifications. We based our software on the barcode material experienced in real life and then by utilising a neural-network and applied machine intelligence, we have created a solution that can actually learn to correlate a deformed signal to an ideal signal.”
“A 3.5% gain may sound small, but it’s a substantial gain at the tough end of the equation. It’s the 3.5% that turns loss to profit.”
To put these figures in perspective, even a smaller National Parcel Carrier will typically process in excess of one million parcels a day. A 3.5% gain translates to 35,000 parcels, a day, that would have had to be manually processed. Estimating 30 seconds to manually process each parcel, this solution in theory could save an organisation 291 man-hours, per million parcels, per day.
In broad commercial terms, the benefits to any Postal or Logistics organisation are clear. The more barcodes that can be read, the higher percentage of parcels remain in the pipeline to be sorted automatically, resulting in less costly manual intervention and faster processing. Customer satisfaction, more return business, and an opportunity to bind those customers for the long term is good news for anyone concerned.
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