Electronic Data Interchange

n. (EDI, abbr.)A standard (ANSI X12 and EDIFACT) for the use of computers to conduct the automated exchange of business information between trading partners.


An EDI message typically contains a header and trailer, and a number of business facts, known as data elements, that typically appear on a form used when executing a transaction. EDI messages are generally used to exchange information between applications, not free-form messages between human agents. The format of the message is established by the trading partners, usually in compliance with the ANSI X12 or EDIFACT standards.