EDI mapping is a simple concept. The objective is to connect two systems to automate communication. If you’re sending EDI transactions you must map data from your system of record to an EDI file. When you’re receiving EDI transactions you must map data from the EDI file to your system of record. Your EDI solution requires mapping.
The complexities lie in the fact that every company has different requirements. Even if you’re running the same ERP as your trading partner your systems will have different needs.
EDI Mapping exercises require both functional and technical expertise. Within an organization this is typically two different people.
From a functional standpoint, you have to understand the meaning of the data and how it is used. That functional requirement turns into mapping.
Field level mapping usually happens in a spreadsheet. It’s a lot of work to map each field from source to target system. This exercise usually requires an ERP expert. Mapping is essential to building a functioning EDI integration. It’s really easy to want to get started as a developer but the documentation must be done!
A member of the integration team will take the functional EDI requirement and write code. The person who writes the functional requirements is rarely the same person who does the technical work. There is a risk that by communicating the requirements for EDI mapping, that something will get miscommunicated.
Communication between the functional mapper and technical lead must be dialed. The functional mapper needs to clearly express requirements. If requirements are not clear, and there is a bug, both people need to communicate about the gap.
In an ideal situation, your functional and technical people communicate well. Each requirement and each iteration of code will take time and cause delays in getting your integration live. Each delay in going live with your trading partner will cost you revenue.
Therefore, you will want to make this process as high quality and as fast as possible.
One approach to streamlining the mapping process could be to invest in training. You could teach your functional people how to write code. They could have enough background to provide your technical team with technical instructions. You could also train your technical people in business workflows so that they could start writing code without the hand holding from the functional team. This would be a lengthy investment.
Finally, there is an alternative. Tap into a cloud EDI solution that eliminates EDI mapping all together.
Customers using Orderful’s EDI solution take advantage of pre-built integration relationships. Orderful is connected to thousands of companies. Therefore, the technical job is already done. Enabling EDI data is now like flipping a light switch. No more requirement gathering or EDI mapping.
Orderful’s API for EDI provides you real-time feedback. Your functional person will get real-time feedback and can fix any problem as self-service. No phone calls, miscommunications or delays.
Your EDI mapping will be solved forever. Talk to an expert. about how our cloud EDI solution can actually make communication easy.< Back to EDI Blog
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