Market research company IDC expects the market for EDI, a long-established mechanism that enables businesses to exchange data between back-end systems, to grow by 15% between now and 2006.
According to IDC, the total value of goods purchased using EDI will grow to €809.9 billion in 2006, from €712 billion in 2001. Traditional EDI, which is based on proprietary networks between businesses, will continue to play a major role in supporting these purchases.
However, as organisations leverage these existing investments, they will extract greater value from traditional EDI systems by adding Internet interfaces, suggests Rogier Mol, a B2B analyst at IDC. In small and medium-sized businesses, Internet EDI will become the preferred interaction method because of its relatively low cost and high reliability. “Far from succumbing to the slow death many predicted, EDI, in conjunction with ecommerce and emerging technologies, is still in the process of changing the speed and cost of doing business,” says Mol.