The flow of Retail and Manufacturers EDI

  June 01, 2012       By Ray Atia
There are sometimes purchase orders filled out from buyers to suppliers. This purchase order starts in the buyers database, and it moves through almost seven steps until it comes up to the suppliers database. Once the transaction is finished, the supplier invoice goes through the same route again back to the buyer. There are a lot of steps to look at. The first step is when the buyer has a production database that comprises data that is created by application software. The application software package might be purchased by the vendor, or it might have been developed custom in-house. The buyer inputs order information, and the purchase order is made on the computer. The order information then goes through a lot of different programs. The interface software changes and double-checks a lot on the document, and then they send that data into an EDI interface. The EDI program interface has a lot of the order information within the content of a form that can then be read on EDI translation software. This is a network of programs that shifts or points the data on an electronic document programmed according to EDI standards. The electronic document, like the purchase order in the case of this document, is a basic unit file that has all the order data that is seen in a pre-formatted, easy-to-understand format. The chat software adds a lot of appropriate communications information to the document so that it can be sent over the telephone lines. Then, with a modem and a telephone line, the buyer can send the purchase order to a computer that is owned by a supplier. There is communications software that is installed on the computer of the supplier, and then it deciphers and translates the communications information to get the document open. What this does is convert the EDI purchase order into a format that people can understand, and it will be available on the computer of the supplier. The suppliers translation software will then evaluate and look at the file, and they will put the information in an interface program. The EDI program has all the translated purchase order information, and it is in a way that people can understand it. The interface will then double-check the document. Finally, it is verified before it goes into the suppliers system. This is a great way that companies can start to use electronic documents to exchange information.