July 21, 2015

AutoQuotes Newsletter July 2015

FEDA Data Interchange (FDI) - Order Status Portal

When FEDA's President, Brad Pierce, initiated the idea for the FEDA Data Interchange (FDI), it was quite apparent that this was an opportunity to enhance communication and encourage collaboration among channel partners. The collaboration began with extensive discussions with the FEDA, MAFSI, NAFEM, CFESA, and FCSI principals. The consensus became that, for the distribution channel to operate more efficiently, Order Status information needs to be available outside the traditional silos in which the distribution channel operates. To expedite orders, the channel needs a more efficient and unified experience and to access complete data in a way that limits order exceptions and errors, regardless of the order source. 

The FDI is a centralized data repository that stores Order Status information sourced from multiple manufacturers. It specifies a common dictionary for data fields and a structure for data management. The hallmark of the FDI is that it keeps the information always updated. Manufacturers are required to deliver current Order Status data to the FDI every 24 hours. Some manufacturers update status every 15 minutes.

The FDI Portal provides a secure unified access point to FDI Users. It simplifies the expediting of project management and the level of service to the sales force and their end user customers. Reps see orders for their Dealers, from their Manufacturers, in their territories. Dealers see only their own orders. They can track faster than ever before: if orders were received, or if they shipped or will ship on time. The FDI accesses API's to track shipments and delivery dates from 99 different freight companies

You'll no longer need to call or email factory contacts. No more logging into separate manufacturer website portals, only to see different data presented in different formats. See Origination Rep, Destination Rep and Spec Rep noted for your dealer purchase orders. You'll also see the orders on which you are the Destination or Spec Rep!

Just after the NAFEM show, 45 manufacturers committed to participate and a handful of dealers and reps beta testing the interface. The FEDA conference in March kicked the project into high gear, allowing a number of manufacturers and dealers to see the new FDI Portal for the first time and to realize its potential.

The buzz continues to build. Feedback during the spring buying group tour reinforced the notion that the FDI portal will become a significant industry standard. At the NRA Show, Danielle Mason from Meiko was thrilled to report that after only a short time sharing Order Status data through the FDI Portal, their incoming call volume to customer service was reduced by approximately half! And that was with only 40 percent of the dealers participating! 

The FDI now delivers Order Status data to 345 Reps and over 1000 Dealers. More than 140 manufacturers are participating and more than 45 of them are publishing Order Status data in the FDI. Every week the numbers are growing and additional manufacturers are signing up and publishing.

The FDI Portal will continue to flourish and give Reps, Dealers, and Manufacturers back some precious time. Now that the door has been cracked open, we truly look forward to providing and supporting this platform for future and more extensive data exchange and collaboration within the foodservice distribution channel.

Check the new "Order Status" Portal in AutoQuotes regularly. Click the "Participating Manufacturers" button in the upper right hand corner to see which manufacturers are on board. You can also track the progress of this initiative here: www.myopenorders.com.

If your manufacturers are participating, thank them. This will make your lives easier. If they are not participating, encourage them to do so. It will save you and them considerable time.

Michael Greenwald, President


Take a Tour of the FDI Portal

In this video, you will see how the FDI Portal works and get a brief overview of the important features.




We want to hear from you!

The FDI is constantly growing and evolving, and we are always looking for ways to make it more useful to you. Tell us what you think by emailing your feedback to fdi@aqnet.com

We look forward to hearing from you!

The AQ Team


Let’s Talk

To learn more about publishing with AutoQuotes, subscribing to AutoQuotes, questions about our products and solutions, or to schedule a demo contact the AutoQuotes sales team at sales.uk@aq-fes.com

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