The Future of EDI VAN
The evolution of the modern EDI VAN has seen it move beyond the exchange of digital transactions to become an integration platform that improves business productivity and supply chain effectiveness. It has become critical that EDI VANs continue to broaden the range of services they offer customers. Some recent EDI VAN innovations have given us an indication of where the of the next generation of EDI is heading.
EDI VAN Forecasting
The next generation of EDI VAN will incorporate AI and machine learning to improve inventory management and demand forecasting. A by-product from the COVID-19 pandemic is the knowledge that widely used business models such as just-in-time and build-to-order, are major vulnerabilities when unexpected widespread disruption occurs. To build resilience and agility the focus has now turned to advanced demand planning and forecasting fueled by AI and machine learning to better match inventory to actual customer requirements.
EDI VAN uses for AI and Machine Learning
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are beginning to have a significant impact on EDI VAN capabilities. These related technologies are introducing features that go far beyond what has been possible in previous generations of EDI VANs. A few of the new capabilities include:
- Advanced automation: AI can detect patterns in data within invoices, purchases orders, and ASNs, that allow it to intelligently and automatically route, enter and process across enterprise systems and to their trading partners.
- Enhanced validation: AI learns as it goes and becomes increasingly accurate over time. For example, it can learn what to check within content of an invoice by comparing it with other invoices and documents relevant to the transaction.
- Complete exception management: As the AI system recognizes errors it either resolves the error when possible or routes it as an exception to a human. This brings the organization one step closer to truly being able to manage by exception, increasing the speed and quality of its processes.
EDI VAN with IoT Capabilities
The Internet of Things (IoT) has rapidly become an essential technology in industries including manufacturing, retail, utilities and the public sector. In the supply chain, for example, IoT-enabled devices provide real-time location data, delivering real-time visibility into the status and condition of goods in transit. Most supply chains are operated via EDI VAN and the next generation of EDI VAN includes IoT data as another input which will help improve supply chain planning and minimize risk by understanding exactly what is happening at every link within the chain.
EDI VAN Supports Sustainability
From the beginning EDI has supported environmentally sustainable practices by reducing process inefficiencies and by reducing the need for paper documentation. Today, sustainability is rapidly becoming a cost of business for every size of company. Poor ethical and sustainability practices can have a negative impact on brand reputation and share price. In the future, large customers will increasingly demand sustainability by their network of trading partners communities. EDI VAN continues to be forward-thinking for the future business that considers environmental responsibility an integral part of their business operations. It also does this at the benefit of lowering overall costs for the business as well.
Next-gen EDI VAN will provide enhanced profiles of all trading partners active on their network. These enhanced profiles will go beyond business and financial details to cover additional information such as their ethical and sustainability policies and practices. This allows businesses to review their future EDI VAN providers global directories to make it simple to quickly identify and onboard new trading partners with a level of assurance that they meet business, operational and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) requirements.