Here are the steps you will need to follow for Seek and Apply marking: Identify your inventory of items. Locate the items.  Place a Data Matrix bar code on each item.  Make sure the labels and plates stick.

That sounds simple enough, right?

Now let’s scale that image a little bit.  Let’s say you have identified 10,000 items in inventory.  For some of the items, you have a basic handle on their location, but how do you get to all of them with the right label or plate?  What kind of material is required for each item?  Where will that label or plate get manufactured?  Will the item data required to manufacture that label or plate be accurate if coming from the system of record?  What happens if there is a mismatch between the item data and the existing nameplate when you show up to mark the item?  Now multiply that one scenario by 10,000.

Decisions that you make early in the Seek and Apply approach to item marking have many downstream implications.  We’re going to focus on Seek and Apply considerations in the coming postings.  Meanwhile, consider this.  A2B has had a significant amount of exposure to legacy items for the military in the past year.  At least 20% and possibly as much as 35% of the item data from the system of record has proven to  be wrong or inaccurate.  If you do the math that means 2,000 to 3,500 records in that database example above won’t match what is on the nameplate.  How will that impact your approach to Seek and Apply marking?