- October 27, 2017
- Posted by: administrator
- Category: EDI solutions
For almost thirty years now, companies use EDI for their automated exchange of business documents – this has been successful so far in decreasing human errors and the costs associated with the correction of these errors. However, often times it happens that errors do occur and when they do, chaos ensues. What is more, business partners do not always follow the rules that you have set – for example, they may not respect your indicated timeframe in order to send Advance Ship Notices.
How do you get error-free EDI documents?
In order to monitor and correct all these issues, you need something that can accurately oversee everything that is happening.
Such a system does exist and it is used by all the world’s top companies – it is called B2B operational intelligence and it basically ‘sees’ the transaction flow as it is taking place within the trading network, before the these transactions actually cross the frontier over to the back-office environment. Just like an antivirus, it detects bad data and according to its level of seriousness, it either places it in quarantine or it deletes it altogether. This system does not only point out what’s already broken, but also gives you a nudge with regard to potential issues that could escalate if you don’t intervene to correct them.
B2B operational intelligence solutions are around for some time, but if you don’t have one just yet, consider investing in this amazing ROI-boosting tool.
Operational intelligence vs. business intelligence
A concept that is even more known than B2B operational intelligence is business intelligence, which stood as the basis on which operational intelligence developed.
But what are the differences between them? Until not far ago, business intelligence was an excellent method of risk mitigation that all top companies would use. However, this method analyzed bad data that had already entered the system. Only then could they act on it through their ERP and/or translator – and even then they can’t always deal with bad data that comes from external sources such as trading partners.
On the other hand, operational intelligence has the power to detect bad data before it enters the system – or in other words, just in time for necessary action to be taken and avoid catastrophic situations.
How do you get the best solution on the market?
Now that the explanation is in order, what are the things you should look for when browsing the market for such a solution? Below we will look at some of the most important factors that can make or break the game:
- Architecture that is scalable and takes the same steps your business does as it grows;
- Neat operation with supply chain processes – it should do so impeccably;
- A very user-friendly interface that offers the possibility of self-service and thus relieves the IT department of a cumbersome amount of requests;
- A business-rules configuration that is so flexible it can successfully handle even the most specific compliance requests;
- It offers your employees transparence into operations and enables them to make timely decisions by offering real-time valuable information;
- The ability to send out alerts according to your particular business needs;
- Any structured data such as CSV, EDI, XML and flat files should have integration support.
Any successful B2B program should include B2B operational intelligence, as well, for guaranteed positive results.