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The Integral Blog

The Integral Blog

Do You Still Need EDI?

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Do You Still Need EDI?
Yes, you do:
— The retail industry alone has invested billions of dollars in EDI technology. That investment assures that EDI is still highly relevant and not going away.
— There is a resurgence in mandated EDI compliance and a requirement for broader EDI solutions than we have seen before.
— At Integral Group, we are meeting your needs for today and looking into the future so that we always stay 4 moves ahead.

What is an EDI Kilo-Character?

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Prior to the Internet, private Value Added Networks (VANs) took care of moving EDI data between trading partners. While business before the worldwide web seems a lifetime ago, it is necessary to consider that time to understand the background of kilo-character (KC) charges and why they no longer make sense in 2022.

Let’s Talk about Integral Group's Flat Rate pricing alternative eliminates the hassle of KC charges.

5 Industry Trends for 2022

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I tend to avoid those year-in-review articles that show up throughout December. I prefer to wait and review the year once all the data is in rather than rush to pump out content for year-end. I took the month of January to do a measured review of trends that I’ve seen in our industry, and I’d like to share my observations with you.

These are 5 things I’ve noted with interest that I believe will stay strong in 2022.

Replace Email, Telephone and Fax Ordering with Excel

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It can be cumbersome if you have low-tech customers that send orders to your warehouse by email, telephone or fax. Data entry into your WMS is time consuming and it’s easy to make re-keying errors. An alternative is to ask your customers to send their orders in an Excel spreadsheet. How does it work?

OmniChannel Part 5: The Technology Burden for 3PLs

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This is the final article in this series on omnichannel.

The technology burden lies with 3PLs to accommodate the different ordering methods their customers prefer to use. EDI was created 30 years ago to bring a level of standardization to data formats in B2B exchanges. It has lived up to expectations for some, but not everyone
(see EDI: A standard that’s not really standard). There are other data formats like CSV and XML, and it’s up to the 3PL to accommodate those formats too. Now that eCommerce is prominent for B2C exchanges, there is new technology for 3PLs to support in the form of shopping carts.

Omnichannel Part 4: Warehouse Management

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Order Management and Warehouse Management are tightly connected. Order Management communicates with customers while Warehouse Management communicates with warehouse personnel. Regardless of the source for omnichannel orders, they all enter the same warehouse management system (WMS). The WMS is responsible for organizing orders for picking and shipping in the most efficient manner.
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