Saturday, March 25, 2006

EDI standards sources

There is a tremendous amount to learn if you want to do EDI yourself rather than outsource your EDI system. Here are some EDI standards sources to get you started.

ANSI ASC X12 (American National Standards-X12) X12 is a standard that defines many types of business documents, including purchase orders, invoices, and shipment notices. It is the oldest and the most widely used standard.

The ANSI (American National Standards Institute) delegated responsibility for EDI standards to the ASC (Accredited Standards Committee) X12 organization back in 1979. X12 was initially used in the shipping industry by the TDCC (Transportation Data Coordinating Committee) and in the food distribution industry by the UCC (Uniform Code Council). X12 has since been adopted by many other industries.

You can find out more about X12 standards at X12 Accredited Standards Committee and American National Standards Institute .

UN/EDIFACT (United Nations/Electronic Data Interchange for Administration Commerce and Transport) is another set of EDI standards. UN/EDIFACT is managed by the United Nations Trade Data Interchange Directory (UNTDID) and is used primarily in Europe with the notable exception of the US auto industry.

UN/EDIFACT standards were originally based on ANSI X12 and TDI (Trade Data Interchange, a generic EDI standard used in Europe. You can find out more about UN/EDIFACT standards at UNECE.

Over time the ANSI X12 and UN/EDIFACT have become quite different. Both of the standards include syntax rules, message design formats, data element definition parameters, code set practices, and implementation guidelines.