Descartes is helping C1000, one of the largest retailers in the Netherlands, improve the accuracy of the data flowing through its supply chain. For many years, C1000 and Descartes have closely cooperated with the aim of optimizing C1000's EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) process. However, C1000's supply chain challenges go beyond just EDI. As Edward Heijnen, Supply Chain Manager at C1000, explained to me, it’s much more important to look at the supply-chain process as a whole by defining the current problems and fixing those issues that can be resolved. C1000 was receiving around 2,500 EDI error messages every week. Looking into these errors took a great deal of time, so Heijnen wanted to improve the process. And that is why he turned to Descartes, choosing to implement Descartes’ Validation Service to enhance C1000's purchase-to-pay process.

Descartes Validation Service allows EDI messages to be validated both syntactically and as content. Upon receipt, EDI messages are checked against the GS1 standards, the most widely used supply chain standards system in the world, and the parameters which the individual customer wishes to use. Different retailers can use different parameters. Any EDI messages which do not fulfill these requirements are subsequently rejected and then automatically returned with an indication of all the errors in question.

The service's reporting functionality makes it straightforward to find out how an EDI partner is performing. This allows retailers to eliminate errors in collaboration with their suppliers. C1000 expects the final error reduction rate to be 90%. By using Descartes' Validation Service, C1000 is now able to proactively respond to problems which might arise as error messages in its back-office system. This saves C1000 a great deal of time and also improves its relationship with suppliers and the level of service which it offers its shops.

To learn more about Descartes’ Validation Service, visit

To learn more about C1000, visit their website at

Written by Fred van der Heide

Vice President, Product Strategy at Descartes