Would You Drive A Car With No Dashboard?
Though I have known this for many years, recent discussions with IT and EDI Managers highlights the degree to which the entire EDI Community and individual industries lack any EDI metrics or measurements – not just to measure themselves, but to see how they compare to other companies overall, or within their respective industries. Additionally, everyone wants to know what best practices are within a given process or sphere, but who defines a best practice?
Back in the “early days” of EDI, there were plenty of published articles on these topics, and good, collaborative efforts were made to measure and benchmark. There are so many aspects of EDI and potential EDI metrics such as the percentage of error-free POs processed to the cost per EDI transaction and so on.
Though there seems to be great interest in knowing about EDI metrics and best practices for EDI measurement, there is not the same degree of interest in participating in any activities to define best practices and examine EDI metrics. A call from me last year to thousands of EDI professionals across the country produced just three respondents!
I will give kudos to the retail industry and VCF for some of the work they have done around compliance, ASNs, etc.
I think it’s about time a national organization like X12, DISA or GS1 got behind an initiative to bring companies and industries together again. We all need to sit at the table – through some hard work, a few arguments and with executive buy-in, maybe we can illustrate just how beneficial EDI metrics are and how measurement can help use reach business goals when implemented correctly and across functions.
After all, with the money and effort spent on EDI, and without any EDI metrics or benchmarking, we are just driving blindly down the road.
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