Automatic identification systems, particularly bar codes, are an essential link in achieving automated construction materials management system. There is a significant future in bar coding, as is evident in other industries. The opportunity to promote data transfer between organizations and companies has not been adequately explored. By following the research and procedures of other industries, it is possible to achieve such standardization. Texas A&M University has completed the first phase of research to determine strategies for achieving standardization. This research, and the background to bar code use, is discussed in the paper.