IDEA is launching a new service, IDEA Volumetrics, which will provide additional weight and dimensional product data in IDEA Connector.
Distributors need multiple levels of weights and dimensions for eCommerce freight calculations, warehouse automation, logistics, and quality processes.
Collecting the Data
The marketplace is challenged by the lack of weight and dimensional data available for most products. In addition to continued outreach to manufacturers to supply the data, IDEA will coordinate distributor sourcing to assemble and contribute weight and dimensional data for manufacturers’ product lines, including scanning products as needed.
IDEA is partnering with Avalon CSC, an experienced supply chain and logistics company, to collect manufacturers’ weight and dimensional data.
“We’re responding to industry demand to provide more product data by partnering with Avalon to collect product weight and dimensional data. This volumetric data will improve real-time freight calculations for eCommerce orders, operations, handling and freight costs, quality checks, and warehouse automation for the electrical industry.”
—David Oldfather, President of IDEA
Data Collection Process
IDEA will be assembling a volumetric database of products for electrical distributors and manufacturers to access and use within their Product Information Systems (PIM), eCommerce Platforms, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and/or Warehouse Management Systems (WMS).
- IDEA will request manufacturers to upload additional levels of existing weight and dimensional data into IDEA Connector.
- Unavailable manufacturer weight and dimensional data will be sourced from a network of IDEA distributor customers through a Cubiscan 325 data collection device.
- IDEA will also offer Volumetric Pro Data Services in conjunction with Avalon. This will provide manufacturers with another option for collecting their production information.
- The IDEA Volumetrics team will provide resources to facilitate product scanning, perform quality assurance, prepare and upload the product file for customer access.
- IDEA Volumetrics will refresh the manufacturer product catalog on a regular basis and continuously add new product volumetric data.
For distributors and manufacturers, weight and dimensional data is critical information. From streamlining freight and shipping eCommerce orders to warehouse layout, slotting and automation, volumetric data helps improve the supply chain.
Manufacturers sell more products as distributors automate processes to deliver products faster with better service.
“Weights and measures are important to my company because we’re currently doing an initiative where we’re rolling out distribution centers across the company. The primary reason that this information is important is due to the ability to be able to accurately slot our material in our warehouses to be able to efficiently pick, pack, and ship the material to our customers.”
—Lisa Hefel, Manager, Cost and Profitability at Crescent Electric Supply Company
IDEA Volumetrics Next Steps
The IDEA Volumetrics subscription service provides data for high velocity electrical items, with tens of thousands already available. This will enable electrical distributors to access weight and dimensional data via IDEA Connector into their ERP, WMS, PIM, and eCommerce systems.
IDEA Volumetrics is launching with a select group of distributor customers as founders of this new IDEA service. IDEA Volumetrics Founders will have an opportunity to have direct input on the service and advise on priorities. General subscribers will have access to the same high-quality weight and dimensional data based on the standard annual IDEA Volumetrics service fee.
Manufacturers will have an opportunity to sponsor the new IDEA Volumetrics service and subscribe to the Data Integrity Support Program. Manufacturers will be provided with access to their products that have been scanned by the distributor network.
IDEA data is available to manufacturer-authorized users and the IDEA Volumetrics service requires an IDEA Connector Catalog Plus level subscription as a prerequisite.