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Learning Center

Welcome to Data Communication Solutions’ EDI Learning Center! DCS is your resource for learning all about EDI. Here, you can take advantage of the following free resources:

  • EDI Educational Videos: our series of videos explains various aspects of EDI in an easy to understand way.
  • EDI Glossary: learn the definitions of terms commonly used in the EDI world.
  • EDI Transactions: learn the purposes of the hundreds of ANSI X12 and EDIFACT EDI transactions.

To further your EDI education with one of our experienced DCS Consultants, we offer our ELITE™ EDI Training Service.

An Introduction to EDI

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) is the computer-to-computer exchange of routine business documents such as Purchase Orders, Shipment Notices, Invoices, and Remittance Advices. The exchange occurs without human intervention. Data moves from your customer’s computer system – through the Internet securely – to your computer system. However, a person such as a Customer Service person must review it before it is accepted.

EDI is widely used by large companies around the world. The documents and transmission conform to standards and are independent of the business application used. EDI utilizes a tightly structured data format which allows the data to be processed directly in either the originating or receiving company’s application. Typically, EDI first occurs with key customers then later with vendors and transporters.

An example is a Customer Purchase Order. The typical first encounter is a Customer Service person being alerted that it arrived in the ERP or accounting system and has been suspended due to an incorrect price or part-number. This means the data entry step has been eliminated. An outbound example is an invoice created after an order has closed. The only difference is that the invoice is not mailed.

Customers not requiring EDI use WebForms, which are also used for lower volume transactions such as a freight claim for damaged goods.

Click here to see the answers to frequently asked questions about EDI.