850 flow chart

Introduction to The 850 Flow

Sending purchase orders are an essential part of any B2B operation.  In the EDI world, a purchase order is given the code ‘850’. When an 850 is sent from the retailer, known as the trading partner, it is processed through multiple channels before reaching the supplier. This process is what we call the 850 flow. Read further to discover what’s really involved in each step of the 850 flow.

The Retailer

The retailer creates a purchase order in their ERP system. It is then exported to a flat file or other standard format. This is sent to the retailer’s EDI system to be translated to an EDI document. At this point the document is labeled as an 850. Next step in the 850 flow? The purchase order is sent to the retailer’s VAN via FTP.

The Trading Partner’s VAN

Once the 850 is received on the trading partner’s VAN, it queries the ISA envelope, identifies the sender and received IDs, checking if the IDs are associated to the mailboxes on it’s network. The retailer’s VAN confirms that the sender ID has a mailbox but the received does not and loads the 850 to the retailer’s mailbox. Van checks it’s interconnect table and finds the received ID is connected to the Supplier’s VAN. It interconnects the 850 via FTP.

The Supplier’s VAN

The supplier’s VAN queries the ISA envelope, identifies the sender and receiver ID, checking if these IDs are associated to mailboxes on it’s network. The supplier’s VAN identifies that the receiver ID has a mailbox on it’s network, but the sender does not. The supplier’s VAN sends the 850 to a mailbox owned by the supplier’s EDI Provider.

Supplier’s EDI Provider

The next party handling the purchase order within the 850 flow is the supplier’s EDI provider. Let’s take our system for example. The supplier logs into their web EDI account on EDI Werx, opens the purchase order and prints it. Depending on the trading partner’s requirements, the supplier may need to create return documents (Purchase Order Acknowledgements, ASNs, invoices, etc).

The Supplier

Lastly, EDI Werx will FTP to the supplier’s VAN and downloads the 850 from it’s VAN mailbox. The 850 is translated by EDI Werx’s translator and loaded to a web form. An email is then sent to the supplier notifying them that a new purchase order was loaded to their web EDI/EDI Werx account.

This is the complete step-by-step process of the 850 flow. Click here for more blog posts about the 850 code.