10 Reasons to add barcodes to your Dangerous Goods labels


Example of a Lithium Batteries Inside label with a custom barcode

Dangerous Goods (DG) identification and shipping is complex. One way to simplify things is by adding barcodes to your labels. When you make every DG container and package barcode-scanable, you’ll improve processes, reduce human error, cut down on frustrated shipments and carrier rejections, and keep labeling in compliance.

Many Labelmaster customers specify labels with barcodes, and some customize them for maximum control and efficiency. Here are ten reasons why you should consider barcoding for your DG operation.

Reason #10 – Training

Barcode scanning lets you spend less time training your associates to read and interpret DG labels—which leaves more time to invest in operations, improving efficiencies and inventory management. And as your product offerings grow, scanning technology makes that growth easier to manage.

Reason #9 – Smoother Compliance Audits

If you manufacture, distribute, or transport DG, you will probably be subjected to a DG compliance audit at some point. Barcode labels and software make compliance easier as DG rules change—which they do, all the time—even if you don’t have DG talent on staff. Plus, auditors like to see automated systems rather than manual processes, especially when dangerous goods are involved.

Reason #8 – Availability of “Real-Time” Data

We live in times of changing customer expectations, volatile demand curves, continuous supply-chain adjustments and time-sensitive shipping. Barcode scanning gives you real time, accurate data to move your DG packages efficiently through your warehouse and supply chain.


Example of a Caution Lithium ION Battery damaged package label with barcode

Reason #7 – Improved Decision-Making

With data available immediately, you can make faster, better decisions. Having real-time data available can shorten response times, enhance your effectiveness and ultimately save you money.

Reason #6 – Improved Inventory Control

Can your team correctly and instantly identify all the different types of lithium battery shipments? A barcode scanner can! By removing a potential source of human error, adding barcodes to DG labels reduces the likelihood of incorrectly inventoried products or mis-picks. Improved accuracy translates into improved order fill rates and fewer returns.

Reason #5 – Faster Order Processing

Scanning barcodes is just plain faster than reading and interpreting DG labels.  Faster processing also means more volume out the door, with fewer errors. No wonder most larger carriers no longer accept hand-written documentation.


Example of a Peel Away Lithium Battery Document label with barcode

Reason #4 – Lower Handling Costs

By reducing the handling time associated with reading and interpreting labels (see Reason #5), barcode scanning streamlines the handling process and lowers your labor costs.

Reason #3 – Data Flexibility

At Labelmaster, many of our customers use Code 128 on their DG labels. This gives them the flexibility to use alpha- and/or numeric characters for part numbers, aiding with inventory tracking, logistics and supply chain management. If you need more options, many are available.

Reason #2 – Relatively Low Implementation Costs

Barcode systems are fairly basic—just computers, handheld scanners and supporting software. They give you unmatched speed, reliability and accuracy at a relatively low cost, and you can count on a robust return on investment.

Reason #1 – Reduced Incidence of Human Error

Of all the reasons to add barcodes to your DG labels, the most important is reducing the likelihood of human error. Many of today’s DG labels—lithium battery handling labels, for example—look very similar. You’ll experience far fewer errors with your employees scanning labels rather than reading them or manually entering critical information.

These aren’t just any packages, remember—they’re Dangerous Goods. Avoiding errors isn’t just good business, it’s safe business.

Given the importance of doing it right and the cost of doing it wrong, adding barcode product labels to your DG supply chain process should be an easy call. Labelmaster can help—ask us how!


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One Comment;

  1. Najihah said:

    Hi, is there any clause in IATA regulation that says we cannot put the label together with the barcode?