Remember the pre-barcode era when most businesses found out what they owned and where it was just once a year during that tedious accounting activity called taking inventory? This non-productive and often disappointing exercise could take several weeks to complete and generally disrupted routines in every department.


Dawn of a New Age

The advent of scanning technologies solved all that. The wave of a portable, hand-held laser beam over custom-created barcodes quickly identifies the property, which department owns it and where it is supposed to be. In just the past few years, scanning technology and the creation of specialty barcodes extended the property-accounting process from inventory to shipments, faxes, office supplies, vehicles in the car pool and even employees.


Voice Recognition

Just over a year ago, voice-recognition software brought an altogether new dimension to the accounting process. In the mail sorting area, processing times decreased up to 80% as employees were able to sort packages and assign delivery routing as quickly as they could speak the recipients name out loud into their wireless microphones. If they couldnt pronounce the name, the computer did it for them. If the package didnt carry the name, sorting software was able to direct the piece to the correct department and label it with a notice requesting that the recipients name be updated. Sales of the new voice-recognition software were brisk.


Screens and Features

Ascom Hasler Mailing Systems has now taken technology to a higher level with its new Smart Track system. The PC-based system has a wireless receiving scanner that is used to log the carrier name and delivery date into the system. The Smart Track operator speaks the recipients name and the receiving screen identifies the recipient and sets up delivery routing. This alert screen identifies time-critical deliveries. A signature capture device or a signature pad enables delivery verification.


Smart Track follows the path of an item from an entry point typically shipment and receiving to its delivery point. The user benefit is the simplification of all accountable mail, packages, faxes, office supplies and certified mail, making it easier to know when an item was delivered, who signed for it and where it is now. By keeping digital tabs on accountable items, the Smart Track system eliminates the need to look through handwritten logs and reams of paper to find scheduled or disputed deliveries. The tracking data entered into the system allows the production of management reports showing statistics, chargebacks and employee productivity.


Smart Tracks features were developed as a result of feedback from corporate shipment and receiving managers. These pro-fessionals wanted a system that would be flexible and economical while providing the information necessary to better manage their departments. The Smart Track system focuses on providing the user with data that measures productivity of not only their personnel but the efficiency of their entire internal delivery process.


The Perfect Fit

Three versions of Smart Track are available to fit specific appli-cations. The Express system offers scalable operating software, so upgrades are possible as individual needs change. Voice recognition is not offered with Express. The feature-rich Enterprise version is a turnkey system that includes voice recognition, custom screens and forms and the necessary hardware and peripherals. The Ultra system offers all the above features plus ODBC linking to host databases. It also uses SQL database technology to link a companys offices in the same building, across town or across the country.


With additional features to increase ease-of-use, Smart Track will help you better manage your business while increasing productivity. The advent of these new software options will help your company remain competitive and will positively affect your entire delivery process.


For more information, please visit Ascom Haslers Web site at