"Barcode Compliance: Wrong Format" Defect
What is "Barcode Compliance" at Walmart?
Barcode compliance is one portion of SQEP's Phase 2 program. Walmart measures its suppliers' barcode compliance against their ability to receive cases based on the scanned barcode.
In the updated Secondary Packaging Supply Chain Standards (SPSCS '23), Walmart defines barcode compliance as "wrong format, incorrect quantity, incorrect barcode, or other barcode defects" (187). For more specific direction on how to stay compliant, see pages 183-240 (esp. 217-220) of the SPSCS.
Note: these page numbers are the ones at the top of each page in the SPSCS '23, not necessarily the PDFs page numbers.
What is the "Barcode Compliance: Wrong Format" Defect?
Within SQEP's barcode compliance standards exist a few common defects, one of the most common of which is "Wrong Format." The SPSCS defines this defect as:
"Inspection and Automation: Barcodes are present on the case, but there are no barcodes with the required format." (p. 188)
Information about the barcode packaging standards for specific categories can be found on the following pages:
General Merchandise Packaging Standards: 206-210
Produce Packaging Standards: 298-299
Meat/Seafood/Poultry Packaging Standards: 295-297
Eggs Packaging Standards: 293-294
DSDC Packaging Standards: 260-267
Direct Import Packaging Standards: 276-283
How to Prevent Valid "Barcode Compliance: Wrong Format" Defects
Walmart requires two properly formatted labels on each carton, with at least one placed on the longest side. Another important factor is matching item setup in Item 360 with the correct barcodes. The correct GTIN barcode, Walmart Item Number, and Supplier Stock Number are also key to avoiding fines.
Code 128s indicate that the wrong font was used on the label. Make sure that you are updated from a 12-digit barcode to an ITF-14 (interleaved 2 of 5, 14-digit barcode).
The "Wrong Format" defect is also oftentimes a confusion between the ITF-14 and GS1-128 formats. More information on these, again, can be found on pages 215-221.
Can the "Barcode Compliance: Wrong Format" Defect be Disputed?
Yes, in HighRadius, just like all other compliance fine disputes at Walmart.
How to Dispute "Barcode Compliance: Wrong Format" Defects
If the fine is invalid, assign the FIXit ticket back to Walmart with the dispute reason. Sometimes FIXit tickets will disappear after this if the dispute reason is valid and Walmart accepts it. Even still, it's a good idea to follow up in HighRadius with the ticket number to make sure that the charge disappears as well.
As always, attach any proof documentation to further validate the dispute reason. When filing a dispute, fill in the information for "Dispute Reason," "Amount to be Disputed," "Comments" (if applicable), and "Attachment" (for relevant documents). Sometimes the photos attached to tickets in FIXit will be helpful for making a case.
Disputes can also be monitored and updated in HighRadius under the "Disputes" tab.
More SQEP: Continued Learning and Our Solution
For an exhaustive resource on all things related to SQEP compliance, download our SQEP Handbook.
If you would like more insight into your SQEP performance and a way to quickly and painlessly dispute invalid SQEP fines, schedule a meeting with a member of the SupplyPike team today!
Written by The SupplyPike Team
About The SupplyPike Team
SupplyPike builds software to help retail suppliers fight deductions, meet compliance standards, and dig down to root cause issues in their supply chain.
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