Big opportunities mean serious requirements.
When you’re working with a major retailer, the stakes are high. So, of course, are the rewards. When you have a chance to have your products on the shelves of The Home Depot, you jump at it, knowing that you’ll be in front of millions of customers in stores and online. After all, this is the world’s largest home improvement retailer, boasting more than 2,200 stores across the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Establishing a solid relationship with The Home Depot is a game-changer for many brands.
When it’s The Home Depot, handling orders needs to be seamless.
Once you’ve been added to the inventory of a major retailer like The Home Depot, what should you do? Well, when it comes to orders, we have some ideas. In fact, we have a list of questions.
1) Does your EDI provider have The Home Depot mapped?
Mapping means that your EDI provider knows exactly what the retailer needs to remain EDI-compliant. Major Trading Partners such as The Home Depot have very specific requirements and maintaining a good relationship demands that you meet them. For instance, when your EDI provider has The Home Depot mapped, they’ll know everything that must be included in the Advance Ship Notice (856) that is transmitted at the time of shipment. It’s a substantial list, and includes information such as the Unit Cost. A good EDI provider will also know that The Home Depot requires the Functional Acknowledgement (997) within twelve hours of the receipt of outbound documents. Does it sound a bit complex? Well, it sort of is — that’s why we take pride in our own experience with The Home Depot EDI, and know that we’re helping our clients succeed.
2) Is your EDI provider experienced with The Home Depot?
Sure, who you know matters in business. But only to a point. What really matters is what you know. To avoid mistakes and costly chargebacks, make sure your provider has the experience with The Home Depot EDI that will make the process seamless and efficient. If they know the ins-and-outs of the process, you’ll have a true partner helping you succeed — not just an order-taker.
3) Does your EDI provider offer a direct connection to UPS and FedEx?
The volume of sales at The Home Depot is staggering. So if your products are popular, you’ll be shipping a lot of them. Anything you can do to cut down the number of steps between an order coming in and a shipment going out will save you valuable time. If you can automatically transfer information from your EDI software to FedEx and UPS, you’ll not only save precious hours but you’ll reduce the possibility of costly mistakes, too.
4) Does your EDI provider offer multiple packing options?
Efficient, cost-effective packing is critical for every company. When you’re dealing with the significant sales volume that The Home Depot can create, it becomes even more important. You’ll want an EDI provider with software that lets you merge data from your back-end system (Packing by Spreadsheet) or offers Fixed Quantity packing so your specifications automatically repeat when it’s appropriate. There are other packing features that robust EDI software will provide, and you’ll want to be sure you have what you need when you start working with The Home Depot.
5) Does your EDI provider have an experienced customer support team?
A team of experts in both general EDI and the specific requirements of The Home Depot is critical. Let’s be honest — nothing in business goes exactly as planned. And when you need help getting an order right, you’re going to want to talk to someone who can get it figured out —fast. At eZCom, our customer support team not only knows our Lingo software, they know the lingo of The Home Depot. Whether it’s a Purchase Order Acknowledgement (855) or an Invoice, they’ll make sure you’re getting it right.