by Meridith Levinson

EDI, XML and Portals: Which Is Best for Your Company?

May 01, 20061 min
Enterprise Applications


Best for: Big companies that have the budgets and staff to implement and maintain it, and trading partners with which they have long-term, strategic relationships.

Use for: Routine business processes and high-volume transactions such as posting shipment notifications, sending invoices and confirming purchase orders.

Web Portals

Best for: Small and midsize companies that don’t have the IT staff or the budget to do EDI, as well as for dealing with trading partners with which your company does business infrequently.

Use for: Low-volume transactions.

XML (including Web services and RosettaNet)

Best for: Large, leading-edge companies with healthy R&D budgets for experimenting with this new technology.

Use for: Business processes that require real-time transactions, such as collaborative forecasting and looking up item pricing and availability. XML transaction sets such as RosettaNet (which was developed by the electronics industry) are also good for automating new business processes that were never developed in EDI, such as identifying whether electrical components are made with hazardous materials.