September 15, 2016

EDI Expert Video Series 3.0 Episode 2: When a Partner Asks You to Use a Specific EDI Solution

In EDI Expert Video Series 3.0, IDEA’s B2B EDI Solutions Manager Tom Guzik continues to explore the ins and outs of EDI. Intended as a guide to small IT teams making big decisions and changes, this series answers the questions about various aspects of EDI implementation, integration, and maintenance. In this episode, we discuss whether you necessarily need to use the specific solution your EDI partner has asked you to.


Question: My EDI partner has asked me to use a specific EDI solution. Do I need to use exactly this method to exchange documents with them?

A: Not necessarily, because what’s important to know is what is the rationale for your trading partner asking you to use that specific solution. All EDI packages can be working with all other EDI packages. They’re basically interchangeable, because you’re basing it on a standard of X12, XML, or EDIFACT, which facilitates the use of machine-to-machine capability.

They may just be asking you to use the solution they have because the company they have a contract with is looking to do additional business and said, “Look, if you ask [your partners] to use the same solution, we can give you a better price because we may need to do less mapping and less configuration work.”

At the end of the day, it’s all compatible. You don’t necessarily need to use that solution they asked for, but I would ask them, nonetheless, what was their rationale.

Want to learn more about EDI or IDEA’s IDX services? Contact Tom Guzik at