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Eliminate EDI Mapping with These Killer Features

EDI mapping is necessary because everyone seems to be on a different business platform. And even companies that are on the same platform probably label much of their data differently. So every time you add another retailer, you have to engage in hours of careful EDI mapping and testing to make sure your systems will talk to each other in the right way.

But if you use an EDI solution that has the following two killer features, you could minimize or even eliminate the need for EDI mapping—thus saving your company countless hours of frustration.

Can Your EDI Solution Swallow Flat Files Whole?

One of the biggest time wasters for us all is that business systems used by retailers tend to spit out X12 files, or standard flat files. But you probably can’t consume flat files—you want to see XML files, or maybe JSON files.

JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) files are lightweight, easy to understand, and easier to use than XML files, but XML files remain the standard. The trouble is, converting your flat files to XML or JSON files adds an extra step to your processes. You may be sending your flat files to an SFTP site or VAN connection so that someone can do the EDI mapping necessary to create the files you need. Only then can you use the files.

What you need, then, is an EDI solution that lets you convert flat files to XMLs or JSONs automatically as part of the EDI transmission process. It should consume your flat file through an API endpoint and translate it into the format you need. Any EDI mapping should be done for you, instantly.

The solution should also be able to turn a JSON into an XML file if you’re working with one of the larger retailers who are using ERP systems like Oracle, SAP, and Microsoft. Those systems still tend to prefer XML files.

And if your original file isn’t even an X12—if it’s in some other format like CSV—your EDI solution should be able to work with that, too.

It’s All About the Rules

Of course, even if we seek to automate EDI mapping, we still have to provide some input as to how that data should be mapped. No EDI solution can read your mind.

The traditional way to get your EDI solution to do what you want is to have either your in-house staff or expensive consultants write custom code. Now there’s a better, cheaper way.

By using a rules engine, you can point and click to configure the rules by which your data will be mapped to your trading partner’s system. Yes, you would still have to do this for each partner, because again, no two are exactly alike. But at least you could complete the task yourself, with minimal effort and without incurring hefty consulting fees.

The Orderful platform contains both of these killer features for essentially automating EDI mapping.
Talk to an EDI expert at Orderful.

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