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EDI outsourcing defined.

Dictionary definition

EDI outsourcing is contracting with a third-party to manage EDI transactions between suppliers and trading partners. EDI means Electronic Data Interchange and SaaS EDI providers offer software applications to ensure suppliers stay compliant with the EDI requirements of retailers.

Outsource EDI or manage it in-house?

When your brand gains momentum, you begin to trade with larger retailers. And once you figure out what is involved with EDI, you’ll need to decide if you should outsource your EDI or manage it yourself.

First, you need to understand that if you want to do business with large trading partners, an overwhelming majority of them will demand that you have EDI capabilities. Outsourcing EDI is a solution that lets you be confident that you are staying compliant with their standards and can free you up to focus on building your business. Transaction details are just that — details — and when you outsource EDI to a provider that is a good fit for you, the most important thing you gain is peace of mind.

That’s because handling EDI in-house is a daunting task. After all, you launched your brand because you had a specific expertise or an entrepreneurial bent. It’s impossible to imagine anyone working to create a product and market it effectively because they are very interested in managing EDI transactions.

If you’re trading with major retailers, EDI will be a requirement. What’s more, you need to handle it correctly. Mistakes can be costly, resulting in chargebacks that will cut into your margins and frustrate everyone. Good relationships with your retail trading partners are, of course, essential to your business, and errors in your EDI transactions will be damaging.

At first, many companies will try to manage EDI on their own. And if your business is limited to only a few transactions each month, that may be manageable. But let’s look at reasons why you should consider outsourcing EDI.

Woman making a choice at fork in road

Reasons to choose EDI outsourcing.

  • Your time is valuable. Managing EDI in-house, especially if you’re new to it, is likely to be a major time sink that could consume major chunks of time — hours that you and your employees could use for other tasks. Before you decide outsourcing EDI is too expensive, consider the opportunity cost. The time you spend on EDI could be invested in pursuing new deals, coming up with new product ideas, improving your branding — whatever it takes to grow.
  • Mistakes cost money. EDI is not uncomplicated and when you outsource it, you gain a level of expertise that comes with years of experience. Here at eZCom, we have been providing EDI services with our Lingo software since 2000, and there is simply nothing we haven’t seen. We constantly update the mapping to retailers and our application has built-in validation checks to prevent errors. Errors become chargebacks that quickly cut into your profit margins and make doing EDI yourself expensive.
  • Integration can make your business run more efficiently. If you’re already using another system to run your business — an ERP or accounting software like QuickBooks — you can outsource your EDI and make it easier to merge data. At eZCom, our integration team will create a solution with our Lingo software that will make the flow of information seamless.
  • Ship more easily. If you outsource EDI, your provider should have software features that make shipping efficient and fast. Our Lingo software has connectors to FedEx, UPS, USPS, Endicia, and others.
Supply Chain Solutions truck on highway

When you outsource EDI, you bring in expertise.

Here at eZCom, EDI and order processing is our business. We’ve been doing it since 2000 and we are constantly updating our Lingo software to improve it. Those updates are often made when the needs of our clients change — we want to make sure we keep pace.

We’re invested in our business — SaaS for EDI and order processing — and you are invested in yours. Trust an expert to handle your EDI transactions and keep your focus squarely on growing your business.