How your EDI Partner Has Your Back When Its Up Against a Wall

by Jodi Abrams

There are many benefits to outsourcing your EDI to a managed service provider. Here we talk about some that are not always applicable, but when they do apply – you’ll be happy that you have a trusted partner in your corner.

Financial Considerations

There are many financial aspects to consider when outsourcing your EDI, some trigger an immediate benefit and some are a benefit you didn’t even know you had. Let’s look at them.

Reduced Cost for Reduced Volume

Depending on the model your managed service partner has set up, if your business slows down, and your revenue decreases, you are likely to have significantly less EDI activity. If you are paying per transaction, this will automatically translate to a reduced EDI invoice, allowing you to only pay for what you need. This is a great area to lower your costs during times of financial hardship.

No Cost for Trading Partner Changes and Implementations

Whether you are seasonal, or have highs and lows for other reasons, having trading partner implementations included in your EDI managed service cost allows you to still move forward with them even in times of financial uncertainty. You don’t have to worry about spending thousands of dollars to onboard a trading partner that you might only get a few orders from. If your managed service partner includes implementations at no additional cost, it can be an easy decision to move forward with these. This also helps should you have a sudden surge of new implementations one quarter. You are in a great position not to have to figure out where those extra implementation costs are going to come from should they not have originally been in your budget.

Resource Stability

A number of reasons or events can cause you to be in short supply of EDI resources. With EDI being a real-time process, daily monitoring is always a necessity. You could be in a situation where someone calls in sick at the same time their back up is on vacation. Or perhaps you have someone resign and didn’t have a back up in place. As the EDI workforce ages, retirement is approaching in the coming years for many in-house EDI experts. Finding, hiring and training the next expert is time consuming and costly.

You may also see yourself in a position to need to layoff staff. Your resource that spends half of their time supporting your EDI system unfortunately could be on that list leaving you with little options.

Having a critical part of your business such as EDI outsourced to a trusted managed service provider makes all of these concerns a thing of the past. The provider will have a whole team of resources who are knowledgeable and trained to support your environment. They can have a great depth of resources including backup/contingency plans should their staff be sick or on vacation. With a large and varied client base, they are also in a good position to ride out an economic downturn, ensuring they can continue to support you through tough times.

A True Partner

Choose an EDI managed service partner you can trust and rely on. This is someone who will help you to work out a plan when things are tough. They will offer up ideas like deferred payments, or reduced costs in times of financial hardships. They will want to help you to succeed and will make investments in the relationship to prove that. They will truly have your back.

About the author: Jodi Abrams

Jodi is an expert in SAP and eCommerce integration, and is Vice President of Applications for CONTAX.