Product Traceability Provides Transparency

When producing any kind of product, it’s important to perform product checks to verify what has gone into the product itself or which items have been used for packaging. If the necessary care isn’t taken in doing so, particularly when producing items of food, it can result in contamination and potentially dangerous impurities. This can pose a great risk of danger to consumers and can result in product recalls. There have been high-profile and sometimes tragic results of contamination in food that have brought these concerns to the public’s attention. As a result, consumers are becoming more and more demanding for brand transparency and scrutinising of those who are not so transparent. A survey by GS1 UK found that 37% of British consumers think that brands and retailers are not very transparent, while the same percentage say they would buy a product less often if they knew it was recalled previously.

One key enabler for this sort of transparency that consumers are hoping for is traceability. Being able to trace a product and its ingredients back through every stage of its production means a consumer can have the assurance of food safety. As GS1 UK put it, traceability has allowed for “trust and safety in the supply chain, not only between consumers and producers but also between manufacturers and their suppliers”.

The Stevens Job Module can provide finished product traceability in your production line with the verification of any final processes. Stevens Job is a modular component of our Dynamic Traceability System and helps you to ensure consistency and control over finished products. It will automatically calculate and break down what is needed in the final steps of production to check and verify that the necessary ingredients are present in the final product. In doing so, the Job Terminal simplifies the process and saves you both time in the production process, and time in dealing with product recalls.

Automatic Calculation
of Production

Finished Product
Traceability

Integration With Back
Office Systems

Speak To Our Team About The Stevens Job Terminal

How Job Recipes Are Setup

Similar to other modules in our Traceability System, Job makes use of Recipes created in the Recipe Manager which are used at the terminal to verify the ingredients or stock used in the final product. However, unlike other recipe types, a Job Recipe always needs to be set up to produce 1 finished product – as opposed to a whole batch of products. You can also allocate specific stock units for the products you are producing. For example, in the image below you can see we are setting up a new recipe for HCU Cooler Red Pouches, which has a recipe type of ‘Job Recipe’ and stock unit as “pouches” as that is what we are producing.

You might also notice in the image that there is a checkbox where you can set the recipe to require a signoff. Checking this would mean a supervisor would need to sign off on the products to complete a finished job – you might want to check this to ensure a more scrutinised verification process.

Moving onto the specific steps you add to the recipe, these can be the same type of steps you might add to any other recipe. You can add questions to Job Recipes too, which are good ways to maintain quality and assurance even in the final stages of production. When we’re adding steps to Job Recipes, as mentioned previously, we add the required steps to produce 1 complete product. In this example we have started, we know that 1.044kg of HCU Cooler Red, 1 pouch, and 1 cap makes 1 completed ‘Pouch of HCU Cooler Red’ (our finished product). You might have noticed that the steps here include packaging items as well as ingredients, which means you can keep track of your entire stock, including items like wrappers and boxes. There is also an auto-consume setting which you can use to maintain clarity over stock levels in real-time.

It’s important that before we schedule the finished product requirement (job recipe), we first make sure that we have added a yield to our batch recipe. The batch recipe is what is weighed out in your production process that will then be used in the final product. The yield can be added to a recipe in the Advanced tab in your recipe settings. We are already aware that in this case, the yield is 1044kg for our HCU Cooler Red recipe at 100% mix size.

In theory, if we now schedule our job recipe to produce 1000 pouches – we will have a 100% batch that asks for 1044kg of HCU Cooler Red. Again, this is automatically calculated by the Stevens Job Module based on what is needed for 1 finished product. In another example we might schedule the recipe for 500 pouches, which would then use 1 batch at 50% mix size, requiring 522kg.

The image shows the Production Schedule after this Job recipe is scheduled. We can see here that the system has completed the calculation correctly. In blue we can see the Job Recipe, which is scheduled for 1000 products, while in red we can see the corresponding batch at 100% mix size, requiring the necessary 1044kg of HCU Cooler Red.

Based on the Job Recipe we have set up above, we can now schedule any number of products to complete, and the scheduling algorithm will automatically calculate the necessary number of batches and correct mix sizes needed to produce the number of products required.

Using The Job Terminal to Achieve Finished Product Traceability

The Stevens Job Module forms the ideal solution for complete stock control, enabling you to understand your ingredient and item consumption in production, as well as providing effective, finished product traceability as a result. Once you have set up a Job Recipe, you can proceed with the job in the Job Terminal. Here you’ll see all the necessary items required in a table format, these include the item code, name, and type of item like recipe or packaging.

To demonstrate this we’ll use another example, in this case, a Job Recipe for producing a completed Chocolate Cake. As you can see in the image, we are shown a table on the terminal that lists the necessary items for completing this Job Recipe. These items are the Chocolate Cake Mix, a Cake Wrapper, and Cake Box for packaging. When we open the job, these items will be listed in red to indicate that they are required and not yet added, and as we proceed, they will turn green as and when each is added. This feature makes it clear to see what is needed and what has been added, making your verification process as accessible as possible for you and your operators.

Our Job Module, like the rest of our Dynamic Traceability System, is designed to simplify your production processes while improving efficiency. Within the Job Module, operators can scan barcodes to verify and confirm that the correct items are being added, and the auto-consume setting gives them stock insight at all times – both these features mean less input is required from the operator, saving your business time in your production process.

Further to this, measures are in place to ensure that the correct items and amounts are used. For example, an operator cannot just confirm and proceed without adding items, or if those items added are either too many or too few – to do this would require a supervisor override or confirmation at the very least. With this, in addition to the ability to configure the terminal to require a supervisor check on finalising a job, you can be assured that the products you’re producing are consistent.

Overall, the Stevens Job Module is the ideal solution for adding paperless finished product traceability, while improving production efficiency and stock control with real-time stock consumption within the system. It enables you to maximise consistency in the quality of your products and provide transparency to consumers and businesses alike – maintaining reputation and ensuring trust in your brand as a result.

The Job Terminal software is a modular component of our Stevens Dynamic Traceability System. Find out more about the Dynamic Traceability System here, or download a free brochure below. If you’re interested in implementing product traceability within your business, speak to one of our experts today on 01254 685200 or email us at info@stevenstraceability.com.

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