As I mentioned in my last blog, today I am going to talk about the benefits of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). Business can benefit greatly by moving from a manual process of exchanging documents to an electronic process. From a financial perspective alone, there are major benefits to be realised. Other advantages include:
• Reduced Costs – Exchanging business documents manually involves many people and lots of paper. Due to this, manual processes of exchanging documents include additional costs for postage, handling, printing and phone calls. EDI ignores these additional costs because it does not involve people or paper. There are minimal costs for the use of EDI but these are not significant when compared to the cost of manually exchanging documents.
• Decreased Errors – As EDI does not involve any people, errors are reduced considerably. Manual and duplicate entry is eliminated with EDI. Document exchanges flow straight through to the receiver, making it easy to track documents in the future.
• Improved Operational Efficiency – Sending and receiving documents electronically can be done in seconds. This means that business can use information immediately and efficiently. Moving from manual processes to EDI frees up a lot of staff to undertake more responsibility and take on greater roles. Having more time means they can become more productive. Research suggests that as much as 50% can be saved on human resources from the use of EDI (http://www.edibasics.co.uk/benefits-of-edi/).