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How to make the most of EDI software for your SMB?

EDI, Small to Medium Businesses, SMB, Tips
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Also known as electronic data interchange, EDI software is making a big impact for businesses in nearly every industry. While it might be easy to see how electronically transferring information can be beneficial for a larger corporation, small business owners might be tempted to think that EDI software wouldn’t make much of a difference for them.

In reality, however, implementing EDI software can ultimately allow small businesses to speed up their invoicing process, better manage their paperwork, and eliminate common human errors. So how can EDI software make a difference for you? These features ensure that even small businesses can benefit from this rising trend — if you take full advantage of what it has to offer.

Cost Savings

It stands to reason that exchanging your documents electronically will naturally reduce the need to pay for things like paper, file storage, postage, and printing. While each of these expenses may not seem like much on their own, their combined costs can quickly add up. In fact, some professionals have estimated that using EDI software to process orders can save over $6 per order in comparison to manual processing.

Of course, to truly enjoy these savings, your company needs to go all-in on its EDI software investment. While switching over to an electronic system can seem scary, it’s the only way you’ll be able to cut costs associated with manual order processing.

Eliminate Human Error

Another common problem that plagues order processing is the risk of human error. There is a wide range of issues that can hurt the speed and accuracy of purchase orders and other tasks. From poor handwriting to lost mail, these errors contribute to costly delays — in some cases, they can even cause you to lose customers.

With EDI software on your side, you don’t need to worry about a printer malfunction or poor handwriting making your purchase order illegible. You don’t need to worry about important documents taking days to arrive due to unexpected mail delivery delays.

Instead, you can have peace of mind knowing that your documents will be automatically delivered to the relevant parties through a secure electronic connection. Software integration allows you to keep track of what documents were sent (and when), even allowing you to send documents in multiple file formats to meet the needs of the other party. Transactions can be completed in only a few minutes, rather than several days — something that can make all the difference when you’re waiting to receive payment from an invoice.

Document Processing

To ensure that you get the most out of your EDI software, document processing needs to become a priority for your team. Modern ERP software makes this process much easier by automatically uploading data from documents and integrating it with the information already in your system.

To truly benefit from this streamlined process, however, your team will need to quickly process the information contained in these documents. With the accurate information in hand, they’ll have all the tools they need to take care of key supply chain tasks, such as restocking your warehouse.

While automated document transmission and processing can prove to be highly valuable, your small business will only benefit as your team makes use of this information to inform their other responsibilities. Remember, this EDI software provides access to real-time data. As such, you have a great opportunity to improve responsiveness and become a demand-driven company — a key shift that can help you become more profitable and productive than ever before.

Conclusion

While EDI software can provide many key benefits to small businesses, you will only enjoy these benefits as much as you use this technology to its full potential. When you fully embrace EDI software to streamline many of your vital processes, you can cut costs, increase your operating efficiency, and gain key insights that allow for greater growth and sustainability.

Bob Paulson