Getting Started with EDI
You’ve received a notice from your top vendor: The market is moving toward EDI. We'd love for you to accomodate the improvements to our process. You’ve always known it was a beneficial system to use, you just don’t know how to get the ball rolling. There’s no need to worry. With the right EDI partner and set of resources to guide you, you’ll be trading on your new EDI system in no time.
Evaluate Current Software
When starting an EDI system, you must start by evaluating your current software. Is it able to support the new system? Sometimes, an upgrade may be needed in order for the EDI system to function correctly. Other times, middleware needs to be installed to sit between the existing application and the new EDI software.
Identify New EDI Trading Partners
In order to proceed, you must know which type of EDI system is most applicable to your business and its EDI trading partners. Start by looking at the organizations you work with the most. Do they use an EDI system? If so, which type? Make sure your new EDI system is compatible with the EDI trading partners you would like to interact with the most.
Typically, there is a cost to set up each new partner. Therefore, it’s important to make sure that the EDI trading partners you are conversing with are economically feasible. If you rarely do business with them, it may not make sense to set up an entire EDI system to communicate with them. Start with the largest organizations, and move on to others as your business with them grows.
Find an Internal Champion
SWICKtech will always be available to help manage your EDI system, but you need a member of your internal team to champion the cause. This employee will be hands-on the with the EDI system on a daily basis, and may be able to provide some basic support and training to others within your organization. This person will also be instrumental in getting the EDI system set up and running and in introducing new EDI trading partners as your business with their organization grows.
Install the new EDI System
Once you’ve set up your EDI software, determined which type of EDI system is the most feasible for your organization and its EDI trading partners, and identified an internal champion, its finally time to install your new EDI system.
Once the system is installed with one or two major EDI trading partners, it will take time for your employees to become comfortable with the new system. The internal team member who is overseeing the transition may be needed more during this time to provide support as your organization becomes familiar with the new process.
Utilize On-Going Support
We all know that software malfunctions from time-to-time. And while your internal champion should be able to fix the minor hiccups, sometimes you need an IT support team to diagnose larger problems that are happening in your EDI system.
That’s when you can rely on SWICKtech to have your back. If you encounter any problems, give us a call, and we’ll be there to get you back up and running.
EDI can be a huge time saver for organizations of all sizes. Its automatic, can simplify the ordering process, and increase efficiency. But, installing any new form of technology can sometimes seem daunting. With the right information and EDI partners at your side, you can feel confident that the transition will go as smoothly as possible.
Ready to get started? Contact one of our EDI experts today to begin to transition to a smoother, more efficient, method of business communication.