It’s a trend that’s only going to intensify. More and more companies, of all shapes and sizes, and in all corners of the world, are keying into the power of EDI, or electronic data interchange.

In a nutshell, EDI is software that enables you to build more efficiency into the processes involved in sharing business documentation with trading partners.

Implemented and managed properly, it can bring enormous cost and efficiency benefits throughout supply chains and distribution networks.

The market in EDI is widely recognised as having tremendous growth potential. Two separate research reports just published in the US – one focused on healthcare, the other cross-market – confirm this. Both cite the key drivers in the success of EDI as a rise in demand coupled with rapid technological developments.

The need for cost reduction

Of course, all this is well and good at a global scale but what does it mean for, say, a mid-size manufacturer under pressure to save time and money as it uses EDI to develop its trading network and partnerships?

Typically, in the eye of the storm, will be a very busy business support manager. Among their responsibilities will be the task of managing process improvements to achieve reduced costs, faster processing and fewer errors.

So what can EDI deliver and what options are there for the company manager seeking to recruit ongoing trading partners using efficient processes?

From paper to digital

The good news is that EDI can easily scale to the precise needs of the user and enhance their ability to grow. Any business will need technology that is flexible, easy to deploy and works for its specific circumstances. It has to be a good fit with the way things are done.

One advantage of EDI from Transalis is its in-built paper-to-digital recognition software. This is a real plus if the business customer relies on emails with attachments, such as orders, invoices and shipping notes.

The software reads both the email and the attached document, and can convert them to digital files in any format. The files can then be imported directly into – and exported out of – the customers’ systems and those of their third-party trading partners. This is a great example of business process automation offering the prospect of time and money savings.

EDI Freedom

Under what we call ‘EDI Freedom’, Transalis offers a choice of trading platforms based around the needs of the user. Here are three examples:

  • Web Portal. This includes a download facility that enables you to exchange messages with your EDI partners. You can do this on your desktop, laptop, tablet, anywhere in the office, warehouse or store, and on the move.
  • Partial integration. Instead of you downloading orders and other documents from the portal, Transalis manages that process for you. In other words, we automatically format the information for you to import and export directly to and from your systems. This option is ideal for businesses keen to start greater optimisation of their ordering processes.
  • Full integration. Here, we help you minimise the workload associated with high volumes of information exchanged with trading partners. To do this, we work alongside your application specialist, whether SAP, Microsoft, Oracle or another. We build workflows that seamlessly exchange correctly formatted data directly with your applications.

Leveraging EDI to manage stock levels

Once the most appropriate platform is chosen, you will naturally want to source a reporting protocol that works for you. Take warehouse stock reports for example. Via the web portal, we provide you with access to all the warehouse data you are exchanging with the trading network. That means will you be kept up to speed on essential information about demand, fulfilment and stock delivery.

Underpinning the platform and reports functionality are a range of support packages for Transalis EDI. These are all part of what is a tailored, fixed-cost solution, giving that under-pressure business support manager all the budget certainty and management flexibility they need.

If you need help with growing and managing a network of trading partners and feel you could benefit from EDI, we’re here to help. Find out more about Transalis EDI solutions.


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