In July of 1995, I quit a sales job in the barcode and printing space on a Friday afternoon. I started what became Accucode the following Monday morning. I had my first order by 10 AM that morning. It was for thermal transfer ribbon to print labels going on compressed air filters. Just like that, my career as a professional problem solver began. Day after day, year after year, Accucode has grown, evolved, and adapted. It’s never been easy. The road is always dark and winding, the outcome often uncertain. That never stopped us from trying and succeeding. The trick is never giving up and always having a thoughtful, organized plan to adapt as needed.
When we started, barcode scanners were brand new. They cost $2,000+ a piece (in 1995 dollars). They were huge and slow. There were hundreds of cable combinations for getting it hooked up to the world’s dumb terminal computers. Standards like USB were decades away. Networks were wired only and usually with a token ring, RS485, or coax. Reliable and ease of use weren’t really options. Barcode label printing was blowing up because retailers like Wal-Mart and customers like the Department of Defense were mandated that every case and pallet had to be labeled so that they could begin to automate supply chain data collection.
Accucode was there to help in every step of the journey. We were different because Accucode was willing to guarantee the delivery of our customers’ business objectives through the application of technology. The only requirement was that you had to trust us, listen to our advice, and let us do it the way we knew it needed to be done. We have always been willing to guarantee the outcome and the budget. It’s earned us a position as the trusted technology partner to some of the biggest companies in the world. We’ve helped them innovate and succeed year after year, one technology advancement after another. Their businesses grew and so did ours.
This was by far the strangest year of my entire life (52 years and counting). The pandemic, combined with unprecedented political turmoil, has set the stage for what will undoubtedly be one of the most dynamic decades in human history. But in 2020, we had our biggest growth year ever. We are up almost 100% over 2019 revenues. I’ve said for a long time that when things are going well and businesses are growing and profitable, they are very unmotivated to innovate and get more efficient. When the world is falling apart and everything is changing, companies and people get very motivated to change.
The global economic impact of the pandemic and the associated quarantines will be extensive. It will likely make the Great Depression look mild by comparison. These circumstances are accelerating the adoption and deployment of next generation automation technologies like 5G, IoT, artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality, robotics, RFID, and more. Virtually every business and every supply chain will be forced to drive new levels of automation and remove as many people from the process as possible. Large scale unemployment, currency devaluation, and massive demand changes across entire industries like transportation, tourism, entertainment, manufacturing, retail, warehousing and more will define the next several years. Nothing will really ever be the same again. However, as has always been the case, change doesn’t have to be scary. For every loss there is a new opportunity. The years ahead will be no different. It’s important to keep a positive attitude during turbulent times. Calm, rational, and confident is the only right approach to any moment, as anything else is self-defeating. See NOW for what it is and let it be. From there it gets much easier to align yourself to the opportunities of the moment.
Accucode has years of a bright future ahead as we are uniquely prepared to assist our customers down this road. Just like we have for 25 years, we have a thoughtful, organized plan for how the next generation of networks, mobile computing, data collection, sensing, AI, AR, robotics, and more will be acquired, deployed, serviced and supported. We can help your business survive and thrive. We can help you create a new level of business process automation that gives you real-time, accurate visibility of every aspect of your business operations. We use our own technology, 4Work, to do that for ourselves and our customers. We can help you become a master of delivery operations and customer satisfaction. We can help you scale your operations in a way you have never been able to before. The time is now. The technology is ready. Don’t wait another 25 years to catch up, you may not have that long. Accucode has a plan and we are always willing to help. Thank you for all the years of fun and success. Let’s do it again!