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Understanding ‘EDI as a Service’

EDI as a Service

What is EDI “as a Service”?

At Namtek Consulting Services, we have been providing a service called EDI2XML Translation Service. As many already know, EDI requires expertise and knowledge in the field; not any IT professional can handle a full EDI project. This often makes it difficult when businesses are told by suppliers or retailers that they must be EDI-compliant in order to do business together. Many executives then scramble to try to build an in-house team of EDI and IT experts, spend on the necessary tools and communication processes and so on. In many cases, this can be a nightmare in terms of time and costs. Most of the time, their IT teams are already working at their max capacity with other important tasks and projects in queue.

Also, let’s not forget that EDI documents are comprised of data elements, segments and envelopes, all formatted in specific (and sometimes customized) standards – which are not readable by just anyone or any software system. These documents, therefore, need to be received from the Trading Partner, translated into a more readable format like XML or CSV, and then this newly translated data can then be entered or integrated within the company’s management system. Either companies can try to build this translation tool themselves in-house, buy an already-developed EDI translation tool for their IT developers to use, or simply outsource all EDI work to an EDI Vendor. Read our article on the pros and cons of each of these options.

This is where we come in! Our EDI service allows our customers to benefit from exchanging all of their sensitive documents, like Purchase Orders, Invoices, ASNs, Remittance advices, etc., without the hassles and stress of handling the entire project. Our team of experts handle it all; from EDI mapping to partner configuration to translation processing to standards maintenance to connectivity with the Trading Partner…No hardware or software installation on premises is needed for such a project.

How is this type of Service priced?

  1. A low one-time initial fee for Setup

There are many steps involved in the initial setup of any new EDI project. It comprises of initial analysis, setting up the relationship between the Trading Partners and the customer, setting up the connectivity between the Vendor’s platform and that of their customer, configuring partner specs and platform, setup of communication with the Trading Partner, and all connectivity and data testing required. Typically, a simple, straightforward EDI setup can take anywhere from 1 week to 3 weeks depending on the unique requirements and customization requested by either the Trading Partner or the customer.

  1. Monthly EDI Service Fee

Once everything is ready to go and documents can begin being transferred between the customer and their Trading Partners, there is a monthly service fee based on volume and a mailbox. Typically, the EDI volume is priced based on KCs (or Kilo Characters).

Here’s a brief introduction to KCs:

In every EDI document, a single character or space or delimiter is considered as one character. A Kilo Character is simply every one thousand characters within a document. So, if your EDI Invoice has 1000 characters, your KC would be 1 for that specific invoice. EDI Vendors price by all the KCs transferred to and from the customer (incoming and outgoing documents) in a given month. This may sound like a lot but generally speaking, an average Purchase Order or Invoice can be about 1 KC.

Businesses are realizing more and more the advantages of hiring a third-party EDI Vendor to take care of all their EDI requirements. It’s more affordable, eliminates the need for any in-house EDI team, reduces the stress and hassles of an EDI project, and allows companies to be setup and ready to go within days or weeks rather than months. Nowadays, being EDI-compliant is a huge advantage when doing business with retailers or suppliers. So, why try to tackle this project in-house when it can be done for you at an affordable price?

Speak to our EDI experts to learn more about our EDI2XML Translation Service or visit EDI2XML today.

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