How EDI uniform codes have changed business

Article by ACT Data Services, Inc.

There was once a time when business transactions were recorded on paper and painstakingly filed and organized by hand. EDI or Electronic Data Interchange transformed commerce by automatically translating transaction records into a form compatible with different companies’ requirements for documentation. One of the ways EDI accomplishes this is through uniform codes.

Uniform codes were first established in the early 70s when EDI was in its early stages. They were a response to the need for a quicker checkout process for shoppers at retail stores. By 1974, the first iteration of UPC or Universal Product Code was created and the UCC or Uniform Code Council was established to oversee the distribution of UPC barcodes. A pack of Wrigley’s chewing gum was the first product checked out using a barcode.

Today, the UPC is still the main type of barcode used by most businesses. Scanning a product as it is purchased allows manufacturers and retailers to track inventory more efficiently, reducing costs and greatly streamlining business procedures. In the business landscape of the 21st century, uniform codes are essential for competing with all the major retail brands.

ACT Data Services has provided EDI solutions for retailers such as Bed Bath & Beyond, Costco, Gap, and even E-commerce giants such as eBay. If your business needs help with a uniform code or any other aspect of EDI, contact ACT Data Services, Inc. 1-800-ACT-DATA.

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