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EDI Standards

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:

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:

Both ANSI ASC X12 and EDIFACT also contain subgroups, including: