The greatest waste of time in business today is having to manually key data that resides in one system into another. Flex Logistics fights inefficiency at every turn (see our last post on our efforts towards lean / 5S) and prefers to share information with our customers via Electronic Data Interchange (or EDI). With this in mind, we wanted to share with you three simple reasons why EDI through the supply chain makes for a more efficient supply chain.
1. Cost savings
There is savings to be had by retail suppliers, the warehouse and the purchaser when EDI is used through the supply chain. Purchase orders, picking orders and advanced shipping notices can all be automated, reducing the time and cost of generating documents that must be maintained from start to finish. In our warehouse, a single pick order for all of the quantities that aggregates multiple purchase orders means fewer trips back to the racks increasing time to fulfillment and cost.
2. Reduced inventory
Excess inventory means additional costs for everyone from the owner of the goods through to the warehouse who must turn down other business because their available space is being used inefficiently. EDI lets people better demand forecast and plan, ordering appropriate quantities at the right times, preprinting labels and pre-pulling product.
3. Increased accuracy and reliability
Everyone at some time has had a spelling error or transposed a few digits. In the world of supply chain, this leads to incorrect order picks, wrong product delivered to customers and absorbing the costs of return shipping and sending out merchandise again. Through EDI, when the order originates as data from the source client, there is a high degree of confidence it will remain correct through to the end.
Flex Logistics integrates with our clients through several platforms including a direct integration with their system, a web integration or the use of a third party who maps the data from one system to the other. Regardless of the methodology, Flex Logistics understands and uses EDI on a daily basis.
If your current warehouse provider does not or cannot offer EDI for your shipping needs, it’s probably time to talk to us here at Flex Logistics.