How to Use Barcodes in ESC


This article will show you how to use barcodes within the ESC software.

Before You Begin:

Before you start using barcodes you should have a basic understanding of what they do and how they are read.

Understanding Barcodes:

Before you start using barcodes you should understand how they work. barcodes are really nothing more than another true type font to Windows. In fact, most of the data that you see as barcodes is originally entered as plain text before being converted to a barcode font.

The barcode font ESC uses is called Code 39 (sometimes known as Code 3 of 9), one of the most common fonts. Other companies may use different fonts such as UPC or EAN for their barcodes.

Understanding Barcode Scanners:

A barcode scanner does nothing more than read a barcode and convert it into plain text in the currently open program. It should be able to do this in any program that accepts keyboard entry, such as Word, Notepad or ESC. Most barcode scanners can read all of the available barcode fonts, but it is a good idea to check with your vendor to ensure that before purchasing one.

Barcode scanners are usually connected directly into a USB port.

Printing Barcodes:

To print a barcode within ESC simply go to your Inventory pull-down menu and select Print Barcode Labels. If this option does not exist, you probably have the Standard version of ESC. Printing barcodes is only available in the Deluxe version.

Once there simply select the items you want to create barcodes for and the number of labels to print for each. Click Print Barcodes to go to the screen where you can select your label layout and print the labels. It is important to know that the only piece of information ESC prints as a barcode is the part number of the inventory item.

Barcode labels can also be printed for each part received on the Receive Items screen by clicking the Print Barcodes button.

Note: To ensure good scans we recommend printing barcode labels out on a laser or thermal printer. Ink jet printers can be used but the ink has a tendency to be absorbed by the labels which can affect their ability to be read easily.

Scanning Barcodes:

Before scanning a barcode make sure you select the "Scan Items" option on the screen you want to work with (may be located under the Activities menu on some screens), such as Receive Items, Adjust Inventory, Enter Purchase Order, Sales Invoicing, etc. Once the barcode has been scanned you should see the part number appear in this field. You can then manually edit any information necessary before scanning your next item. Scanning the same item more than once will automatically increment the quantity of that item.

Vendor Barcodes:

It is worth mentioning that you are not limited to scanning barcodes created by ESC. If you elected to use the vendor's part numbers as your own, you should be able to scan the vendor's barcode and have it work just the same as if they scanned a label created by ESC. If you chose to use your own part numbers you can still associate the vendor's barcode with your part. To do this bring up your part on the Inventory Entry screen and click the Vendors tab. Select the appropriate vendor from the list and then shoot the new barcode in the Vendor Part Number field and save the item. When you shoot that barcode in the future it will resolve the vendor's part number back to yours. This tab will also be updated with the last purchase price and last purchase date when the item is received from that vendor.

Recommended Scanners:

  • dESCO has tested the Welch Allyn IT3800 Scanner extensively and found it to be a very dependable, inexpensive scanner.
  • Honeywell Voyager Series - 1D Laser Barcode Scanners. The Voyager series barcode scanners are not only dependable and easy-to-use, but are also inexpensive.
  • Honeywell 3820 Cordless Linear Image Scanner. This is a Bluetooth barcode reader that works well both in the office and with the laptop mobile client.
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  • If you scan a part on a bluetooth scanner can you enter the quantity on the scanner or do you have to scan the part repeatedly to get the total number of parts into esc?

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  • Hi Thomas,

    To ensure an accurate count, you should scan each bar-code separately.

    However, if you do not wish to scan each item individually, you can also manually edit the values in ESC afterwards.

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  • Thanks

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  • If the techs have a Bluetooth scanner in the truck can they scan the barcode of the part and it put it on the invoice and take it off their truck inventory?

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