What is EDI?
Electronic Data Interchange is the process of transferring data from one place to another. What makes it different from transferring data traditionally is the fact that it uses standardized message formats over an EDI Network.
There are lots of variations of EDI. Every solution comes down to the preferences of the business. However, XEDI has advanced to the point where our solution can be used via your browser anywhere. Gone are the days of installing clients on specific computers. With XEDI all you need is an internet connection.
When you’re connecting to your trading partners, there are two main routes. You can either use VAN or AS2.
Value Added Network (VAN)
VAN networks are private EDI networks that will have a fee. You can only connect to people if you’ve been invited. There are two major VANs to connect to, the Trading Grid Messaging Service (TGMS) or Liason.
AS2 is a direct secure connection to your partner over the internet. It requires special software to make the connection and doesn’t incur any ongoing fees for sending and receiving electronic business documents. connections are generally faster to get set up initially and give your provider a receipt every time a document is sent or received, so you immediately know if it’s got to its destination or not.
Why do EDI files use a standardized format?
Electronic data interchange standards are like different languages EDI systems understand. Typically the standard would be chosen depending on the business’s location. For example, the X12 format is predominantly used in North American based companies and EDIFACT Is used in European based Companies.