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The Integral Blog

The Integral Blog

Do You Still Need EDI?

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Do You Still Need EDI?

Do You Still Need EDI?
Yes, if you are part of the supply chain, you likely need EDI.

There is a resurgence in mandated EDI compliance and a requirement for broader EDI solutions than we have seen before. In fact, the last few years have been some of the busiest we have ever had at Integral Group.

EDI has always been about providing users with an efficient, paperless tool for exchanging business documents in a standard format. And at its inception, over 30 years ago, that was a big step.

EDI still does all of that, but now we’re seeing some more all-encompassing solutions being employed. It is becoming more commonplace to integrate the technology with back-office ERP systems. We see widespread use of EDI in back-end shipping systems integration using UPS and FedEx. At the front-end, we’ve seen the results of booming eCommerce growth. With this boom has come a proliferation of shopping carts, and our developers at Integral Group have quickly also become experts at using APIs to retrieve the order information.

In simple terms, it just makes sense to use EDI technology. It provides an automated, seamless transition of data throughout the process – and one that does not require manual intervention or re-keying. This also frees your staff up for tasks that are higher value than basic data entry and re-checking.

In purely financial terms, the retail industry alone has invested billions of dollars in EDI technology. Other industries have also made significant financial commitments to EDI. For that reason alone, EDI is still highly relevant and not going away.

Since EDI has stood the test of time, many providers continue to do things the way they did in the 1980s. These providers seem to embrace the philosophy that if it’s not broken, don’t fix it.

At Integral Group, we respectfully disagree with that. The whole supply chain has changed in the last 3 decades, and so have we. We are always looking for ways to be smarter, faster, and better.

And that is serving us well with the push for EDI compliance from retailers in numbers we have not seen before. The influx of multi-national retailers and outsourced manufacturers necessitates that suppliers step up their game. There is an increased requirement for even small businesses to become EDI compliant to engage with their customers.

In Canada, over the last 5 years, we have seen many multi-national retailers popping up in our shopping areas. They brought with them the expectation that EDI protocols are in place. Companies that even a few years ago could deal with retailers in an informal manner are now being mandated to be EDI compliant.

With this increased reliance on EDI technology, you must ensure that you are working with a supplier that can do it all. And one that provides an accessible, intuitive experience with your business software and requires minimal intervention.

The more your business architecture relies on EDI, the more critical it is that your EDI provides a supportive user experience.

At Integral Group, we are meeting your needs for today and looking into the future so that we always stay 4 moves ahead.

Contact Lee Mrkonjic to find out how we can help you.