End users want frictionless solutions that serve a required function with minimal hassle
Barcodes are facilitating a diversity of operations across a variety of
enterprise types. Uses range from tracking assets, equipment, personnel, or
patients to maintaining inventory levels, monitoring sales and improving the
accuracy and accessibility of various data types. Software that facilitates
these various applications and use cases are an integral part of a broader,
end-to-end barcode solution.
End users want barcode software that serves a required function (or set of
functions) with minimal hassle and cost. However, this does not preclude the
option of custom software solutions. A paramount end-user consideration is the
ability of a given application to meet requirements, and if custom is the only
(or best) means of meeting those requirements, end users are willing to make
While many common requirements exist across verticals, tiers, and regions,
enterprises still have unique needs and niche markets exist. Flexibility and
customizability are, therefore, key in a number of criteria important to end
- Device & Application Integration - To support integration of
barcode technology with a variety of solution types, beyond scanners and
printers, such as tablets,, RMCs, Handheld computers, and other mobile
customer engagement devices.
- Configurability at the End-User Level - To meet the unique and
particular needs of a specific enterprises' operations
- Ease of Use - Ultimately, end users are looking for barcode
software that is easy to use, with minimal hassles related to integration,
daily use, upgrades, maintenance, etc.
Integration-related concerns top end-user's lists of considerations when
evaluating barcode label generation software, as well as barcode solutions in
general, due to barcode's use in parallel and in conjunction with a variety of
other technology and enterprise solution types, including peer AutoID
technologies, such as RFID, and with ERP systems. The complete findings of
VDC's Barcode printer Software end-user survey are presented in the
accompanying Excel spreadsheet and key findings are discussed herein.
Barcode Software: Application Support
End users increasingly seeking out all-in-one solutions that ease deployment, usage and maintenance
Nearly 50% of end-user respondents cited preference for all-in-one barcode
software solutions that support all commonly used functions. This indicates
that most enterprises are using barcode technology for an increasingly diverse
range of applications and use cases and that the convenience of all end-to-end
software package is generally preferable to any potential advantages a
patchwork solution may offer.
This preference is also borne out in other end-user data trends:
- Ease of use is the No.1 selection criteria. Most barcode end users do not
want to hassle with the complexities of assembling a multi-vendor/multi-module
- Barcode software is frequently integrated with other enterprise-level
software or technology solutions. An all-in-one package reduces deployment
time and integration headaches.
- For many enterprise end users, barcode solutions are mission-critical to
their daily operations. When it comes to software, fewer moving parts
generally translates into better reliability.
- End users also prefer all-in-one software packages for easier maintenance
and upgrades. Fewer modules means fewer (and less frequent) updates, upgrades,
and reduced maintenance requirements.
Barcode Label Software: Enterprise Solution Integration
Sophisticated end users driving automated label production via integration with enterprise-level software
End users report that ERP and warehouse management systems (WMS) are most
frequently integrated with barcode printing software to drive automated label
printing. Integration at these points are supporting automated label printing
in for applications such as track-and-trace, inventory management and control,
sorting, and distribution.
Supply chain management (SCM) as a point of integration for barcode label
software was also cited particularly in industrial/manufacturing,
transportation and logistics, and large-scale Tier 1 retailers that have
advanced requirements for tracking, identifying and ensuring the delivery of
materials, work-in-process, shipments, and various other assets.
Key Vendor Takeaways:
- Focus on enterprise-wide/enterprise-class solution development and package
creation-many end user verticals need to integrate barcode solutions with
other enterprise-level systems.
- Seamless integration with various enterprise level systems, especially ERP
and WMS are critical, as these system types are supported across a broad range
- On average, end-user respondents indicated integrating two different
enterprise-level systems with their barcode solutions, meaning flexibility for
communication with multiple systems is an important consideration for many end
Table of Contents
- Page 4 End users want frictionless solutions that serve a required
function with minimal hassle
- Page 5 End users want frictionless solutions that serve a required
function with minimal hassle
- Page 6 Robust growth expected as enterprises put barcode to use in a range
of specialized applications
Strategic End User Issues, Trends & Drivers
- Page 8 Barcode Software a Critical Solution Component - Investment Seen
Across all Tier Levels
- Page 9 Barcode solutions a mission-critical solution across vertical
markets - but especially in manufacturing and retail
- Page 10 End users increasingly seeking out all-in-one solutions that ease
deployment, usage and maintenance
- Page 11 Sophisticated end users driving automated label production via
integration with enterprise-level software
- Page 12 The majority of end user respondents prefer on-premise solutions -
and do not expect to switch in the future
- Page 13 Clear preference for OTS software reflects #1 selection criterion
- ease of use
- Page 14 Custom Barcode Label Generation Software: Implementation Approach
- Page 15 Requirements for track-and trace, compliance and operational
coordination drive investment
- Page 16 Unique label requirements drive ongoing investment in retail and
growing adoption in health care
- Page 17 Commercial Services and Government leverage barcode labels to
track assets and organize/access critical information
- Page 18 "Easy" is the key-hassle free installation, integration and usage
and the leading criteria
- Page 19 Ease of use, configurability and customizability are key - but
sometimes Custom is the only suitable option
- Page 20 Barcode Software - Selection Criteria
- Page 21 Fragmented competitive landscape with varied focus areas and
Implications for Vendors
- Page 23 End users will continue to invest in barcode label generation
software to support a range of mature and emerging applications
- Page 24 Vendors need to focus on ease of use and integration, and forge
strong partnerships with their value chains
LIST OF EXHIBITS
Barcode Software End User
- Exhibit 1 Does your company use barcode technology in its operations?
- Exhibit 2 At what stage is your company in terms of using barcode
- Exhibit 3 How, if at all, are you personally involved with Barcode
Solutions at your organizations?
- Exhibit 4 What is the principal business of your organization?
- Exhibit 5 How are your organization's Barcode Printer Software Investments
Divided Across the Following Categories?
- Exhibit 6 How often does your company upgrade/replace its Barcode Label
Printing Software solutions?
- Exhibit 7 Percent of barcode labeling that is On-demand vs. Automated
- Exhibit 8 Which Enterprise-level software solutions are you using to drive
automated label production? (Please check all that apply)
- Exhibit 9 How do you currently deploy your Barcode Label Printing Software
- Exhibit 10 What Percent of Your Barcode Label Printing Software is
Off-The-Shelf/Pre-Written vs. Custom-Written?
- Exhibit 11 Percent custom barcode printing software that is In-House
- Exhibit 12 When did you first start using your custom-written Barcode
Label Printing Software Solution?
- Exhibit 13 Why did your organization opt for custom-written Barcode Label
Printing Software Solutions? (Please check all that apply)
- Exhibit 14 Has your organization been adversely impacted by any of the
following challenges associated with custom-written Barcode Label Printing
Software Solutions? (Please check all that apply)
- Exhibit 15 Which of the following advanced label design and generation
functions do you expect to use/need over the next 12-24 months? (Please check
all that apply)
- Exhibit 16 Has your organization considered replacing existing
custom-written Barcode Label Printing Software Solution with an
off-the-shelf/pre-written label software package?
- Exhibit 17 If you have considered replacement, what is the primary reason
for continuing to use custom-authored solution?
- Exhibit 18 Please rate the level of importance and level of satisfaction
(with your current solution) for each of the following Barcode Label Printing
Software selection criteria. (1=extremely unimportant; 10=extremely important)
- Exhibit 19 For each of the following product selection criteria, please
select which Barcode Label Printing Software supplier you perceive as having
the best solution/service
- Exhibit 20 Which of the following is your primary Barcode Label Designing
& Printing Software application? Has your organization been adversely impacted
by any of the following challenges associated with custom-written Barcode
Label Printing Software Solutions? (Please Check All that Apply)
- Exhibit 21 Please approximate your organization's annual budget for
Barcode solutions for the following years
- Exhibit 22 How was your organization's 2011 barcode solutions budget
allocated by component category?
- Exhibit 23 What do you expect your organization's 2012 barcode solutions
budget allocation by component category will be?
- Exhibit 24 What do you expect your organization's 2013 barcode solutions
budget allocation by component category will be?
- Exhibit 25 What was the target Return on Investment (ROI) period that you
expected from your Barcode Label Printing Software solution? What was the
actual ROI period?
- Exhibit 26 From which source(s) did your organization purchased your
barcode software solutions? During the next 24 months, from which sources do
you plan to purchase from?
- Exhibit 27 What were your organization's primary drivers for investing in
Barcode technologies? (Please check all that apply)
- Exhibit 28 Please choose the title that best describes your position.
- Exhibit 29 What were your organization's 2011 annual revenues?
- Exhibit 30 What is your current geographic location?