Where does the name ‘ediTRACK’ come from?
There is a huge amount of information in a supply chain. From the manufacturer, component supplier, the producer of the raw material, right the way through to the final customer, everyone has some information about a product. Sharing that information will inevitably reduce the costs to everyone involved.
That is the key realisation behind the supply chain management technology that we know now as ‘ediTRACK’.
This was no unique insight. Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) had been around since the 1970s, and though it was largely restricted to a limited set of transactions between large companies, the concept behind it was still the same; sharing information was a good thing. The downside was that it was slow to implement, cost millions to run and was restricted to particular countries and technologies.
So EDI, back then, wasn’t good enough for logistics solutions provider Allport ltd.
As a freight-forwarder, Allport had a key position providing logistics solutions that extended across the globe and encompassed thousands of organisations in many, many different supply chains. Each supply chain was different and so they were impossible to homogenise. They included different industries and different business models. They had different objectives and needed different solutions.
But Allport knew that if they had access to information from suppliers, factories, banks, customs, carriers and all the other supply chain participants; if they could provide a platform that would make it possible to acquire and combine all that data; then that would be a defining part of Allport’s service, and help their customers to make informed decisions about the efficiency, quality and cost of their supply chain.
This is the (not insignificant) problem that the original supply chain management software designers had to solve. How could they spread a data network into multiple international supply chains without making it too complicated and expensive?
The solution they invented included three key features:
- Tie together EDI transactions in an event-based process.
- Provide a user-interface so that the process is visible.
- Use low cost, agile, internet-based development to make implementation easy.
In partnership with some key customers, this system went live in 1994. At the time it was called “Jubilee/PC” and viewed as an extension of Allport’s IT services rather than a separate product.
Shortly afterwards, the system came to the attention of the wider UK EDI community, and Allport were contacted by a network reseller who saw the opportunity to use the technology to enhance their own offering – In particular, the notion of using an event-based process to manage an entire chain of transactions.
A joint venture was formed, and the name ediTRACK was proposed by the network reseller as this best described their particular angle. They recognised that the technology would track EDI messages through different systems and networks. The use of opposite letter-case was intentional – and actually quite fashionable at the time.
After a few years, the ediTRACK product was established and implemented with several key customers. However, not all joint ventures work out, and the reseller business was sold to a specialist networking company. ediTRACK ltd continued within the Allport group.
We focussed our technology and our business on the value that we could offer to our customers who wanted more than just EDI. We wanted to provide complete business processing applications that looked beyond simply exchanging transactions, to the kind of services that could be delivered once that exchange was a given.
Now we now offer a wide-range of packaged Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business process applications, including supply chain management. We also build bespoke web-applications designed for B2B use across the globe. And, if you really want, we can integrate completely into your existing EDI network.
ediTRACK’s process execution software can be used for:
- Sourcing and supplier management
- Order management
- Shipment management and logistics
- Sample management and product tracking
- Medical supply chain management
- Retail supply chain management
- Fashion supply chain management
- Claims fulfilment management