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Automating Commerce


Singapore government agencies are increasingly requiring Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) with their commercial constituents, currently in the form of exchanging XML documents or sockets over secure Web connections. This, along with similar requirements from some suppliers, has prompted the adoption of EDI by many SMEs. The costs involved in meeting these requirements are well understood by SMEs; the benefits remain elusive. This is unfortunate, since the potential benefits are rather substantial, and include:
• Improved accuracy and quality of information and transactions;
• Reduction or elimination of paper flow;
• Reduction or elimination of labour-intensive tasks;
• Streamlining business processes for greater productivity; and
• A quick response special order and replenishment system that can better meet customer needs, leading to greater customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Ping Li and Joseph M. Mula, Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Adoption: A Study of SMEs in Singapore, Chapter XV in: Information Systems Research Methods, Epistemology, and Applications, 2009, Information Science Reference, Hershey, New York.