RFID and EDI Mandate

  June 06, 2012       By Ray Atia
Currently there are a host of issues that affect the large scale implementation of electronic data interchange (EDI) and radio frequency identification (RFID). Mandates are found with the biggest corporate retailers as well as the federal government. This creates a class of businesses that are forced to adapt to the EDI mandate that is being pushed in the industry. Some retailers will not do business with a company that does not embrace the use of RFID and EDI on a daily basis. This creates a mandate that makes implementing the technology essential to the success of the business. Other firms are taking an approach that is more patient with the adoption of the newest technology. This group may also be planning to use RFID and EDI, but they have not made the investments in the intellectual infrastructure that are required. The major difference between the two groups is whether they have a mandate to adopt the new technology. Some of the firms that are waiting can also be seen to have a mandate in that they risk losing business because they have been slow to adopt the new technology. Challenges are presented to both groups, and the latest technology does not offer an example that can be used to learn from. Adopting new technologies has previously occurred with firms that do business with the government. These firms were made to adopt the use of EDI in their daily operations. The government authorities mandate the implementation of EDI to any other firms that were in their supply chain. Some small businesses were unable to put forth the capital that was required for the adoption of new technology. These firms often lost out on business, and many are no longer in operation. There are currently mandates from the government and large retailers for the implementation of RFID technology. Continued business transactions require the adoption of RFID technology. Many large retailers use mandates to improve the overall efficiency of their operations. Wal-Mart, Target and the Department of Defense are just a few of the industry leaders that are pushing their suppliers with mandates that make it imperative to embrace the newest technology. Mandates are thus coming to the forefront of a host of different businesses. Driving change is pushed by retailers and presents an interesting case study for business managers to understand when it comes to EDI and RFID mandates