Walmart Incorporation is one of America’s largest multinational retail companies conducting its commercial activities from its headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas. This corporate enterprise operates a vast network of grocery stores, departmental shops, and hypermarkets throughout the country. It encourages many small businesses to become their trading partners and supply a wide range of products to them. However, they should follow certain specific guidelines which this large retail company specifies for them. One of these requirements which small businesses need to follow is the willingness to use the latest EDI technology. Electronic data interchange (EDI) is the software platform two companies use to exchange business information in standardized electronic formats among themselves.
Walmart EDI and an insight into its fundamental features
Owners of small businesses might be aware there are many forms of electronic data interchange technology available to them. These include Web-enable EDI, EDI via FTP, mobile compatible EDI, EDI via VAN or EDI software applications. However, they need to adopt the one which Walmart specifies for all its suppliers operating throughout the country. This is a point-to-point EDI connection used via a secure internet network using the AS 2 communication protocol. It is also commonly known as Direct EDI integration. This electronic data interchange technology is a substitute for the value-added network version which most companies use. The main features of the point-to-point electronic data interchange connection are as follows:
1. With the EDI technology, business owners can process commercial transactions directly with their trading partners using the Internet,
2. The point-to-point connection is compatible with various EDI communication protocols, but Walmart requires its suppliers to use platforms compatible with AS 2,
3. In a point-to-point EDI connection, owners do not need to hire the services of a vendor as in the case of VAN,
4. Businesses adopting Wal Mart EDI connection need to use a software package that works smoothly while using the AS 2 protocol, and
5. Point-to-point EDI connection enables businesses to process a huge volume of transactions and documents within a short time.
Small businesses who agree to become suppliers of Walmart and adopt the point-to-point EDI connection enjoy the following advantages:
Small businesses that adopt and use Wal Mart EDI for commercial operations can expand their market base to cover the entire country. They also have the support of one of the largest retail companies in America. Operating this point-to-point electronic data interchange connection allows them to process a high volume of transactions within a short time. In doing so, they incur only a fraction of the financial costs of using other similar EDI technologies. In this process, these businesses can also significantly reduce the chances of inadvertent human errors and gain a great strategic edge in the market.
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