You invested in an EDI system in order to communicate quickly and effectively with your trading partners. Now, you are hearing about APIs and how they are going to revolutionize the supply chain. Some people have said they will someday replace EDI systems, but that is unlikely, given the widespread use of EDI today.
APIs do not have to compete with EDI systems; they can be complementary. Read on to learn how integrating EDI and APIs break down silos for better supply chain management.
APIs and EDI Systems: Two Silos
Companies that use both an EDI system and APIs generally wind up creating two silos. The API silo and the EDI silo remain distinct. Here is the problem, though. Silos are expensive to maintain and are extremely inefficient.
Why do these silos pop up in the first place? EDI systems and APIs are technically different. They also address different business needs.
The end result is that there is no transparency or visibility into data flows. Monitoring of business performance is considerably more challenging because you have to duplicate your efforts. Moreover, because APIs utilize the cloud, they create a security risk for firms.
B2B Integration: Breaking Down the Silos
Silos within companies cost money and create massive inefficiencies. They force you to carry out the same process more than once and waste valuable time and resources to do so. The good news is that silos do not need to exist.
B2B integration brings EDI systems and APIs under a single umbrella. Instead of having two disparate systems, you have a single pane of glass to see all of your transactions. Not only does this save time, a single pane of glass also minimizes confusion; there is no more wondering whether a transaction was completed or information got stuck in the pipeline somewhere.
Moreover, B2B integration provides greater security for APIs. There are built-in security measures that will protect your firm from any cyber threats, so you can continue to use APIs with peace of mind.
What Are the Advantages of B2B Integration?
There are a number of benefits to B2B integration.
For a start, B2B integration provides you with a competitive advantage. Everyone wants to do work with a business partner that will make their lives easier. An EDI system integrated with APIs offers the best of both worlds; you can work with trading partners that have EDI systems of their own as well as those that do not.
Second, you have greater visibility into your operations. With that knowledge, you can make better business decisions as well as react faster to changing market conditions.
EDI systems are not dead, although APIs have proven their merit in the supply chain. These technologies can work together to improve your efficiency, productivity, and profits thanks to B2B integration. To learn more about how you can break down your EDI and API silos and achieve amazing results for your company, contact us today!