To exchange documents with trading partners, you must convert the data to and from EDI Standard formats. EDI standards are the requirements for the format and content of EDI business documents. EDI standards determine the correct order and location of the units of data in an EDI document. All EDI transactions are defined by EDI standards.
EDI standards developers design and publish EDI Standard formats for various kinds of documents, such as purchase orders or invoices, that you might exchange with your trading partners.
All EDI standards include the following components:
The smallest component in an EDI Standard.
Groups of elements.
Also called messages, transaction sets are groups of segments.
EDI Standard format is comparable to the language that you speak. For instance, an element of the EDI Standard can be compared to a word. A segment in the EDI Standard is comparable to a sentence. A transaction set in the EDI Standard is comparable to a paragraph or a document. In the EDI Standard, just as in the language that you speak, elements (or words) are combined to form a segment (or a sentence). Segments (or sentences) are combined to create a Transaction set (or paragraph or document).
Two commonly used EDI standards are:
EDI for Administration, Commerce, and Transport (EDIFACT) - generic international.
American National Standards Institute/Accredited Standards Committee X12 (ANSI ASC X12) - generic.
Both ANSI ASC X12 and EDIFACT also contain subgroups, including:
Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG).
Chemical Industry Data Exchange (CIDX).
Electronics Industry Data Exchange (EIDX).
Voluntary Interindustry Communications Standards (VICS).
Textile/Apparel Manufacturing Communications (TAMCS).
Sundries and Apparel Findings Linkage Council (SAFLINC).