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It is no secret that white-collar worker productivity in North America has been declining and this is blamed on excessive paperwork. According to Dianna Booher, writing in Quality Progress, Americans create 30 billion original documents annually. In addition, 80 per cent of these documents are somehow, erroneously, retained. For every dollar we spend to print forms, we spend $20-$80 to process, copy, distribute, store and destroy them.
EDI, the mechanism for electronic trade among trading partners, is gaining popularity every day. One of the major reasons for the acceptance of this technology in the business world is its capability to substitute labour-intensive manual and paper-based time-consuming processes with the efficient electronic transmission of information.
Governments and corporations are constantly cutting budgets and personnel as a part of restructuring and downsizing initiatives and business managers are under tremendous pressure to perform "miracles." Investments in the traditional technologies did not really do any good to boost performance to meet the expected level of productivity. This is because most of the companies have been automating chaos. Another reason why business managers like this technology is simply because EDI offers unique opportunities to re-engineer the environment instead of automating existing processes. This helps in getting rid of the fundamental performance deficiencies to improve productivity.
What is EDI?
EDI is computer-to-computer communications of standardized electronic message formats, called transaction sets. The use of predefined formats distinguishes EDI from electronic mail, which typically involves transmitting free-form messages. EDI also differs …