1. How long does it take to implement an EDI solution? 

While there are some variables when it comes to timeline, it typically ranges from as little as a day to a couple of months. To get more specific, the timing for EDI implementation varies depending on where your company sits in the supply chain – so, whether you’re a buyer or a supplier.  

On the buyer side, the process can move rather quickly if the goal is only to connect with suppliers that are already EDI-enabled (capable of sending documents electronically). That’s because you’re setting the message implementation guidelines (MIG) for all of your suppliers—they meet your requirements, not the other way around.  

On the other hand, if you sit on the buyer side and want to enable your entire supply chain ecosystem in addition to your already EDI-enabled suppliers, the time it takes to get all of those suppliers onboarded can vary depending on how many suppliers you have. 

If you’re a supplier, it’s likely that you have to meet the (often unique) requirements of each one of your customers. This means that the time it takes to go live with your EDI solution will depend on how many customers you need to connect to, especially if one-to-one mappings are needed—that can take quite some time. It also depends on how many document types you plan to send and/or receive and if you can utilize a network connection (e.g., Peppol). 

2. What are the potential issues that may cause my project to be delayed? 

Similar to the length of time it takes to implement your EDI solution, any potential issues are also linked to your position in the supply chain.  

If you’re a buyer, the biggest issues that you may face are onboarding delays. This usually isn’t too much of a hassle with EDI-enabled suppliers, but if you plan to enable non-EDI suppliers to send their documents to you as well, for example, with a supplier e-invoicing and/or EDI portal, you’ll have to work hard to meet your deadlines. If your EDI provider will support you in this journey, definitely take advantage of it. TIE Kinetix offers onboarding services to make this process as smooth as possible. 

If you’re a supplier, one of the main things that might delay your EDI project is not having predefined requirements. Your EDI provider will work with you as much as possible to define these requirements, but it’s ultimately up to you to provide them with the correct information. For example, if you need to be able to perform a very specific task or business rule validation that the EDI provider doesn’t already support, that should be clearly communicated upfront to avoid delays. A buyer may also encounter this situation. 

Of course, these are only a few examples of potential issues you may run into. Luckily, if you’re working with a service provider like TIE Kinetix, you should be able to address these problems quickly and efficiently.  

3. Who should I contact for support? 

We can only answer this question by talking about what we do for our customers. TIE Kinetix offers 24/7 support for customers, and when your project is just getting started, you will get to know everyone working on your project and can reach out directly. Once your EDI setup is live, then support is according to our standard SLA, which you can find here. 

4. Will I receive any training on how to use the solution prior to going live? 

Again, we can only answer in terms of what we do for our customers, but in our case, the answer is yes. You’ll become familiar with the solution during the testing phase, and there are plenty of virtual tours to help you out along the way. 

5. In the future, how long will it take to connect with a new trading partner? 

For buyers, connecting with a new trading partner shouldn’t take long at all. For suppliers, it depends on how difficult the specs of the new trading partner are, and if a new map has to be built. If a new map has to be built, the process takes a little longer. Again, though, with TIE Kinetix, your project managers can help to indicate timeframes.  

At the end of the day, many of these answers vary from provider to provider. However, customer service is at the top of our priority list, so you can rest assured that we will be there every step of the way to help make your EDI implementation as painless as possible.