The Global Location Number (GLN) can be used by companies to identify their locations, giving them complete flexibility to identify any type or level of location required.

What is a GLN?

  • GLN is a GS1 identification key. This key is a 13-digit identifier for a:
    • Party
      A party is defined as an entity represented in a business-related transaction, answering "who" engages in leveraging GS1 standards.
    • Legal Entity
      A legal entity is any business, government body, department, charity, individual or institution having the capacity to enter into an agreement or contract such as corporation, subsidiary or holding company.
    • Function
      A function is an organizational subdivision or department based on the specific tasks being performed, such as human resource department or finance.
    • Physical Location
      A physical location is a tangible place that may be represented by an address or coordinates, such as a factory, warehouse or grocery store.
    • Digital Location
      A digital location is an electronic (non-physical) address that is used for communication between computer systems such as an Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) gateway.

GLN Can Support Industry Needs

  • Improve visibility and enable track and trace
  • Save time on manual documentation and data entry
  • Increase order and invoice process efficiencies
  • Streamline communications throughout the supply chain
  • Remove the need for proprietary identification codes
  • Consolidate details and attributes relating to a party or location in one place
  • Increase trust with business partners and consumers
  • Enable system interoperability between trading partners

Location Identification:

This location identification diagram illustrates a Global Location Number (GLN) assignment hierarchy for a fictitious organization.
GLNs can have parent/child relationships.

For example:

  • A Factory (the parent) has two GLNs underneath (the child) "Dock Door A" and "Production Line 1".
  • At the same time, the "Factory" has the "corporate headquarter" as the parent.

As an organization expands, additional parties and locations can be allocated new GLNs.
If a party or location is discontinued, it can be removed from use with minimal impact to other GLNs as the information associated to the GLNs are designed to function independently.

Where a GLN is used:

GLN is fully compatible with ISO standard 6523

GLN is fully compatible with ISO standard 6523.

Data Carriers

A GLN in a barcode can help to route products to their destination or capture where they came from. Use of EPC®/RFID (radio frequency technology) and readers identified with GLNs can support automatically capturing the movement of goods without the need for line-of-sight scanning or other manual intervention.

Sharing Information Using Systems and Communications

Sharing information relating to parties and locations using GLN within GS1 Standards like Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and Electronic Product Code Information Services (EPCIS) will enhance transitional data and physical event data.