In addition to speed and accuracy EDI also provides further benefits by increasing operational efficiency and tightening relations with commercial circles.
Improved partner relations. The automation of electronic transmission and conversion processes requires closer partner relations. It is in the interest of both the sender and the recipient of data to consult each other precisely beforehand about data, business processes, and communication. These create a reliable, fast, and meticulous business relation that both parties will be reluctant to give up later on. The quantitative and qualitative capacities of EDI and the low cost of communication usually result in the growth of business relations (e.g. increased sales), in most cases at the expense of partners who do not use EDI.
Increased traceability of business data. Although EDI in itself is not an autonomous information supply (IS) system, the majority of the data required are generated by EDI. The implementation of EDI enables the monitoring of traffic data for external connections, information which is often more valuable to companies than their usually well-tracked internal data. EDI interfaces themselves offer a possibility for monitoring these data, but if a company has its own, independent information supply (IS) system, then such data can be assigned to that and used by its applications.
Improved planning and performance. The electronic data provided by EDI can also be processed in the interest of better planning and performance. With EDI the procurement, storage, and manufacturing of products to be shipped can be scheduled and the means of shipping mobilised much more quickly and precisely. Customers get a better overview of the delivery process, which enables them to make plans and start new processes on the basis of these plans more accurately.
EDI can significantly improve the company’s cash flow. The more effectively the applications of a company use the data supplied by EDI, the more transparent the company’s cash flow situation becomes. The balance between expenditure and income can be deduced clearly from orders and invoices sent and received. This enables the planning of cash flow and the optimal use of external and internal funds.