Breakthrough in supply chain packaging management
Trading Labels of Warrington in Lancashire has developed Webnosys, an integrated information portal which links brand owners, their product suppliers and packaging/printing suppliers.The software developer says it will transform the packaging supply chain because partners can share secure information anywhere in the world, at any time and at any stage of a product’s life cycle. It is proving particularly effective in sourcing from overseas markets.
“Webnosys tells all those involved in the supply chain exactly what is happening at any given time,” says managing director Steve Pemberton. “It manages the whole life cycle of an item of packaging. Reducing waste is achieved as much in terms of saving time, sourcing and manufacturing more effectively as it is in eliminating wasted product.”
Originally a niche product for the labels market, Webnosys can now manage various packaging formats for use across all in-store consumables. This means it can build and manage a label specification to a consistent format, while storing a visual reference of the label linked to the specification. Users can group specifications and manage a range of products from concept to launch, standardizing to a control timeline and sequence where necessary. They can also tender a range of electronic labels to a set list of potential printers, collate the returns and rank bids for evaluation. Another trick is to collate and store inventory levels at various points in the supply chain, allowing data to be collected electronically from a common MIS without re-keying data. Brand owners can publish the sales rate of an item alongside its inventory and generate data relating to customer demand. They can also upload cutter profiles from a converter and pass them to a design/artwork studio.
To meet security concerns, the primary database is held locally and web access acts as a window into the data. Each partner can access only their own data. Uploads made using the web are verified before their return to the database to protect data integrity, although users can share valuable information for the benefit of those who need it. Webnosys is supplied either as a fully managed service or as an application hosted on a brand owner’s computer system. An unnamed major UK retailer is already using the system for its own-label operation.