Using the EDI 945 to Deliver Shipment Details

by | Mar 17, 2021 | 3PLs, Logistics, Order Fulfillment

There are many ways third-party logistics providers (3PLs) communicate shipment details to their customers. The list includes emails, phone calls, texts and even faxes. Most 3PLs find these methods outdated and use the EDI 945 Warehouse Shipment Advice instead. It is the second most common EDI transaction that 3PLs use today.

3PLs use the EDI 945 to let their customer know that a shipment has gone out from the warehouse. This communication is often paired with the EDI 940 (warehouse order) as the completion of the order fulfillment cycle.

The EDI 945 shares the following information with a customer:

  • Ship-to and ship-from addresses
  • Shipment date
  • Transportation method (e.g., carrier, air, rail)
  • Service level (e.g., overnight, 2-day, ground)
  • Item(s) and quantity shipped
  • Packing specifics (e.g., inner packs, cases)
  • Tracking information

The official name of the transaction is the EDI 945 Warehouse Shipping Advice, but most of us in the industry just call it the shipping details.

Optimizing Staffing

When emails and phone calls are needed to communicate information with a customer, it takes staffing resources away from other tasks. Automating the sending of shipping details takes a load off of customer service teams. They know that the shipping details have been sent to the customer(s), there is no need to double-check. And the customer receives their information from a single source and in a timely manner. There is no waiting or delay.

The EDI 945 is the preferred way to communicate shipping details. It automates a rather simple, but important task. By doing so, the 3PL complies with supplier requirements without the need for additional staff.

Communicating Everything Needed for the ASN

The goal of an EDI 945 is likely to communicate the details needed by the customer to complete an advance ship notice (ASN). This data is likely needed by the retailer, and the supplier is typically required to send it to the retailer shortly after the shipment leaves the warehouse. 3PLs find that by sending this EDI transaction, they can ensure that their customer has all the data needed to comply with a retailer’s ASN requirements. And, the 3PL can send the details in a timely manner as often times retailers require this information from the supplier within a certain amount of time after shipment. No more frantic phone calls or emails. Once the EDI 945 is sent, the 3PL’s job is done.

The Role of an EDI 945 in eCommerce

One of the most important shipping details needed for an eCommerce order is the tracking number. Consumers expect to receive this information shortly after placing an online order. Luckily, it’s one of the components of the EDI 945.

The UPS, FedEx, USPS or other carrier’s tracking number is part of the shipping details communicated via the EDI 945. Communicating the tracking number using this method ensures that the number is connected to the eCommerce order (the EDI 940). It’s accessible from the customer’s systems and not buried in an email or voicemail that could be missed.

Full-Service EDI is the Answer

There are many ways for your 3PL business to do EDIall EDI is not the same. If you partner with a full-service EDI provider such as SPS Commerce, the complexities and day-to-day management of EDI is taken care of by their experts. This model is attractive to 3PLs that want to keep their focus on building their business, not EDI.

Ready for the EDI 945?

If your customers are asking for the EDI 945, I’m not surprised. As you can see, there are many good reasons for it, especially for eCommerce orders. Learn more about 3PLs and EDI here, or contact us to speak with an EDI expert.

Wes Arentson
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