Universal Business Documents

June 2, 2017 Arun Samuga

A Supply Chain Operating Network ecosystem enables you to conduct more efficient commerce, develop more meaningful trading partner relationships, achieve forward-looking flexibility, communicate more effectively, gain predictive insights into market opportunities or disruptions, and more. Customer expectations today dictate that companies deliver Amazon-like, customer-centric experiences.

Elemica’s supply chain operating network was developed to speed adoption of the network, creating critical mass for the network. The more companies attached to the network, the more the network will grow in content and maturity. The backbone of Elemica’s supply chain operating network (SCON) is their next-generation QuickLink Network, an agnostic solution that works with a wide variety of integration protocols (Https, AS2, sFTP etc.) and message types (iDoc, X12, EDIFACT, CIDX, PIDX, XML, etc.), making communication, connection and collaboration much easier. In fact, Elemica’s SCON offers a “Come As You Are” capability, meaning companies can quickly connect to the network without having to change any of their business processes and practices.

A key differentiator is the use of Universal Business Documents (UBDs), which are granular representations of business signals that are needed to automate a business process, to facilitate supply chain integration within a company's B2B network. UBDs allow for deep transaction introspection, high speed data mining, and rapid interconnectivity of trading partners through reusable interfaces. UBDs can help supply chains react faster to changes, which can be a key differentiator for many businesses. Capturing clean, actionable, real-time information across a critical mass of trading partners in a consistent manner is the cornerstone for deriving value out of the supply chain.

The Universal Business Document represents varied and unique business signals found within business processes. UBDs have to be reusable, relatable and interoperable. For example, if you have an invoice that is sent from a supplier to a buyer, the invoice has to relate to a purchase order sent from the buyer to the supplier. Each invoice and PO number is related to a field and to a signal, regardless of the business process, and it can be used by all parties in the process. UBDs give complete visibility throughout the supply chain for all parties, from the point where a supplier receives a sales order to the point that the invoice is paid and can also include carriers and shippers involved in the movement of goods. A Customer Service Rep could look up the PO or invoice number and see where the order is within the supply chain – whether in shipping transit, in manufacturing or in inventory in a distribution center.

UBDs improve message translation, foster reliable inter-enterprise communication and speed up collaboration, making it easier for companies to conduct commerce with each other. UBDs rationalize barriers for trading partners, allowing them to connect to each other easily. UBDs create domain driven expression to business processes and ensure a common language across all trading partners in a SCON.

Previous Article
Elemica Featured on My Purchasing Center
Elemica Featured on My Purchasing Center

According to a recent American Productivity & Quality Center (AQPC) report, supply chain managers identify ...

Next Article
Artificial Intelligence and Supply Chain Management
Artificial Intelligence and Supply Chain Management

Improving customer service and operations while supporting better working capital management with Artificia...