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Electronic Data Interchange

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) is a system which allows document information to be


communicated between businesses, governments structures and other entities. It is a set of standards
which creates a cohesive system within which all parties are able to electronically exchange data
information within a set of protocols.
Although it can be considered that EDI consists of only the actual conveyance of the document, it is
also seen as the implementation of the operating systems whereby EDI can be put into practice. EDI
is the data format of most electronic commerce transitions in the world. There are other competing
conveyance portals such as XML services, Internet and World Wide Web; however, EDI remains the
dominant data format.
The EDI standards describe structures that represent documents such as an invoice or shipping order
for a company. EDI sets up a system whereby businesses and other entities with non compatible
operating systems are able to communicate on the same page, so to speak. EDI provides
applications whereby a more efficient and environmentally friendly network is created between
communication partners. It allows a homogenous viewing of all documents put through the system.
However, its potential is not just in creating automated system networks as in for automatic reordering. It enables companies to exchange information at a speedier rate, and ensure greater security
of delivery. Moreover, it creates a greater ability for businesses to become more efficient and
streamlined.
As EDI is a non-internet based information exchange system, it was assumed that it would disappear
when the Internet became more entrenched in society and business. However, EDI has survived, and
is used by many industries. EDI establishes a firm connection between businesses that does not
necessarily rely on Internet options. However, it can be used over the open Internet, as is increasingly
occurring. Electronic transmission began in the 1960s within the transport industries. This change
also required a parallel standardization of documentation. A committee was formed to coordinate the
development of translation rules among four existing sets of industry-specific standards.
At about the same time, the United Kingdom was also developing its own standards for documents
called Tradacoms. These were later extended by the United Nations Economic Commission for
Europe, and were eventually accepted by about 2000 export organizations. Problems arose when
these two differing organizations of information attempted to exchange information during trade.

These information sets were largely incompatible, and required a working party to begin to create a
range of documents that were able to be internationally understood and transmittable. Currently, EDI
is used by thousands of companies throughout the world, including companies in USA, UK,
Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. It is because of the advantages of reduced human
interference and increased speed of processing that the EDI system is favored by many corporations.
Adjuncts
EDI creates a system whereby companies, governments, and entities that work on different computer
systems to exchange information efficiently. EDI is a standardized format of relevant data which can
be transmitted from one computer system to another with minimal human intervention. It is widely
used and industry to transmit what would have formerly been sent as a document, through the post.
By utilizing EDI, the communication partners are able to send a range of documents electronically,
which provides and increased efficiency rate as well as reduced paper expenditure. There are
currently hundreds of documents that can be exchanged electronically between multiple trading
partners.
The Internet has allowed for an increased flow of these exchanges, rather than those allowed through
closed computer systems. EDI is a popular and efficient way to send and receive documents that
would otherwise be spending wasted days on the road in the back of a delivery van. However, there
is Value Added Network (VAN) used in this situation, and it is similar to a post office. It is a middle
man warehouse where EDI documents can be storage until the receiver is ready for them. This
ensures that important documents do not bounce back to the sender, or get lost in the tray.
Although VAN is used by many companies, and in particular the healthcare industry, many EDIs are
being sent over the internet. However, as VANs provide a myriad of other services such as
retransmission of the document, provision of third party audit information, and acting as a gateway
for different transmission methods, handling telecommunications support etc., they are quite popular
within vicarious industries. Increasingly, EDI documents are being embedded into other transmission
vehicles such as XML, which is being seen as one way to reduce costs. Although EDI originated in
its current form in the United States, its origins can be seen throughout international co-operative
operations which require standardized manifests and instructions.
{mospagebreak title=EDI Elements}
EDI Elements

Variables
EDI sounds similar to electronic mail (email), but is actually quite different. While email allow for
free unstructured test messages to be sent from one computer to another (or multiple) computers, EDI
supports structured business messages to be transmitted between partners. Previously these would
have been hard copy documents or printed business documents. So rather than having documents
pass from person to person, they go from computer to computer. Essentially, EDI is made of four
elements. Firstly, EDI are based on the use of an electronic transmission medium, such as a VAN,
but now increasingly on the open Internet. This is opposed to the physical storage mediums of
magnetic tapes and computer disks.
Secondly, EDIs use structured formatted messages that are based on agreed standards in this way
the messages can be read by any system that understands the rules they are governed by. However,
this is not always as simple as it seems, as there are also the provision of EDI translation software
packages. These are required to set up an interface between the company computer and the EDI
sent/received document. EDI provides a relatively fast delivery of electronic documents from sender
to receiver. And lastly, EDI provides direct communication between applications, rather than
between computers. EDI requires some degree of technology infrastructure.
This includes data management and networking capabilities, data processing, the efficient capture of
data into electronic form, the processing and retention of data, controlled access to it, and efficient
and reliable data transmission between remote sites. Although it is possible for communication
partners who use EDI to be directly linked to one another, it is most likely preferable to use a third
party service provider. The EDI system creates a protocol by which businesses and governments
alike are able to swiftly exchange information with a unified code system to recreate documents that
are sent electronically.
Overview
EDI provides a safe, easy and paper free exchange of information between businesses, companies
and governments using protocols that allow different systems to understand each other. EDI opens up
communication between applications, thereby eliminating the human element, which can be not only
prone to error, but also time consuming. So rather that putting documents into an envelope, finding a
stamp, addressing the envelope and sending it through the post, what EDI does is eliminate this
process and replace it electronically. However, EDI is only considered to be the standardized format
of the transmitted message. EDI itself is a highly regulated protocol which allows the message to be
sent between entities that may not work on the same system.

The EDI consists of many symbols and words that can be read with a solution and thereby be a
document that is understood by both entities. The advantages of EDI have been proposed as being the
reduction of unnecessary re-captures of data, and the automation of existing processes. It is used
world wide by over 30,000 Corporations and Businesses to conduct business transactions
electronically. Not only does it provide increased efficiency due to limited human interference, but it
allows for international protocols to be recognized, and thereby stream line corporation
communications.
Although the fullest range of business documents have not been devised which can cater to the
international needs, they are in the process of production. Industries such as inventory management,
transport and distribution, administration and cash management can all benefit through the use of this
system. It directly reduces the amount of data capture and transcription, which generally reduces the
incidence of errors, handling time and incidence of delays, which are critical to businesses. It is these
delays which can often make or break business ventures. However, with EDI, these can either be
eliminated or heavily reduced.
Underlying the increased efficiency, these systems are run on what are now internationally agreed
upon standards and protocols which allow information to be freely and securely exchanged through a
variety of mediums. No longer are companies, corporations or governments constrained by the speed
at which a package, or document pile can travel within a transport vehicle. The transmissions using
EDI can be almost instantaneous, and thereby alleviate some stresses, and increase the ability of
users to communicate more effectively.

Electronic Data Interchange


Electronic Data Interchange Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) is a system which allows document
information to be communicated between businesses, governments structures and other entities. It is
a set of standards which creates a cohesive system within which all parties are able to electronically
exchange data information within a set of protocols. Although it can be considered that EDI consists
of only the actual conveyance of the document, it is also seen as the implementation of the operating
systems whereby EDI can be put into practice. EDI is the data format of most electronic commerce
transitions in the world. There are
December 25, 2007 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI Standards
Evolution of EDI EDI has been established within various industries as a reliable and efficient form
of data transmission. It is a technical representation of a business conversation between two entities,
either external or internal. From its inception, EDI was applied differently within these industries,
and therefore different standards were set up. In the late 1960s, EDI was established within the
transport industry, and they created their own standards. Soon other industries followed suit and
various standards were created. Thus each of these standards is not necessarily compatible, which
causes confusion and an inability to communicate. EDI was designed to
December 30, 2007 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI Document Types


EDI Document Types EDI documents come in various forms, each of which can appear differently,
depending on the companys internal computer system. Also, while each standard has code
specificity, each order may look very different a clothes company will send details of color and
sizes, while a food company will send details of expiry date. Within the document itself, the
appearance is somewhat dependent on the standard which is being used. These standards differ
worldwide. An example of these standard codes appears as a set of special characters and words.
Each carries a different significance, and denotes a different
December 30, 2007 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI History
EDI History At its simplest, Electronic Data Exchange is the transmission of documents by electronic
means. In other words, the paper-based documents are replaced by electronic data which is
transmitted by a number of means. It is largely used in order to automate standard processes such as
re-ordering, but its application is far broader than that, and it affects a range of industries and
corporations. EDI relies on electronic transmission, but is not necessarily email or using the Internet.
In the least, EDI requires some level of sophisticated information technology infrastructure, which
includes data processing, data management and networking capabilities.
January 10, 2008 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI and Software Applications


EDI and Software Applications EDI and JAVA Java is a programming language originally developed
by Sun Microsystems and launched in 1995. While generally compiled to byte code, direct hardware
execution of byte code by a Java processor is also possible. Currently, almost all of Javas software is
available under the GNU General Public License. Hence it has become free software. The Java
programs most identifiable characteristic is that is platform independent, meaning that it should be
able to be written and compiled once, and then be able to be run anywhere. JAVA script is run on
systems worldwide, and while
January 15, 2008 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI Mapping and Translation


EDI Mapping and Translation Mapping is a movement of information basically of putting the
format of one data document onto another. For instance, it takes the format of an otherwise
incompatible data format and makes it into an EDI compatible data document, or conversely, takes
an EDI document and makes it readable. There are various tools on the market for doing such tasks,
which are readily available through the Internet or at an EDI support centre. These mapping tasks
require software, as it is bringing in line a foreign piece of documentation with EDI standards. The
following diagram intends
January 15, 2008 - Exforsys - Comments:

E-Commerce and EDI


E-Commerce and EDI What is E-Commerce? E-Commerce can be viewed as being a virtual market
place, whereby all transaction that is carried out in the physical world is also available via the
Internet. It involves mainly distribution, buying, selling, marketing and servicing of products or
services through the use of electronic means such as the Internet, and other computer networks. ECommerce involves not just businesses, but individual consumers and corporations. It generally
utilizes the World Wide Web at some point in the transactions progress, but then also simpler
computer tools such as databases and email. Currently, it is foreseen that
January 17, 2008 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI in Industries
EDI in Industries Health Care EDI There are various industries that EDI has a firm hold within, and
the health care industry is one of those. Within the delivery of health services there is a great amount
of paperwork which must be filed, delivered, ordered, compiled and documented. To alleviate the
pressure of this paper pile, EDI has been incorporated into the system so as to provide a
technological replacement for some of this domination. The standard for the health care industry is
HL7, which is also the umbrella organization which oversees the development of standards and their
evolution. It
January 21, 2008 - Exforsys - Comments:

How EDI work with XML


How EDI work with XML EDI and XML systems have been seen as the opportunity to create a
holistic approach to data information exchange that can deliver and process simple, durable and
effective business transactions by electronic means. To achieve this, methods must be employed that
are not only of value within the market today, but have an extension into the future. To guarantee the
technology will be widely accepted and used, it must be made freely available as an open standard. In
this way, the systems can work in conjunction to create a truly effective solution to business data
January 23, 2008 - Exforsys - Comments:

EDI Benefits
EDI Benefits Within various industries, EDI has been used to great advantages, and many benefits
have been expounded in its regard. EDIs benefits relate to environmental impact, improved time
efficiency, improved accuracy and increased flexibility, enhanced partnership, labor costs, shipping.
EDI creates a system whereby documents and data can easily be transported from one source to
another, and is able to overcome incompatibility issues. EDI is a set of standards which govern data
formats and thereby allows disparate computer systems to be able to read the data which is sent.
EDI documents are also able to be stored at a
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