The EDI 856 Advance Shipping Notice (ASN) document is most time sensitive document sent via EDI. These documents usually need to be received in a specified period of time before the truck arrives to deliver the goods. Many partners issue fines or chargebacks if these timelines are not met or if the ASN is incorrect. For this reason, understanding the ASN document is important.
What is an ASN?
An ASN is basically an electronic version of a printed packing slip that tells a trading partner how a vendor has packed their items for shipment, the destination of the shipment and delivery schedule of the shipment. Closely related to the ASN is the UCC-128 bar code label. The label is placed on your carton and is scanned by your Trading Partner’s warehouse. The label lets the warehouse know contents of the shipment without having to open up the cartons and allows the warehouse to electronically match up the label to the ASN in your Trading Partner’s EDI System. This is why the ASN needs to be transmitted to your trading partner before the shipment is scheduled to arrive and needs to be packed correctly.
Packing your ASN
There are 2 methods of packing an ASN: Standard Pack and Pick and Pack. A Standard Pack ASN is used when the same item is packaged together in one carton. A Pick & Pack ASN allows for different items within the same carton.
Structure of an ASN
An ASN contains many different levels of information referred to has Hierarchical
Levels (HL). Here a brief outline of the different levels that an ASN can contain
Shipment Level: Represents the Shipment and contains high-level information such as the shipment ID, ultimate receiver, carrier information and tracking number. An ASN can only contain one Shipment HL.
Order Level: Contains order information that ties your shipment to the Trading Partner’s Purchase Order. There may be one or more order level per ASN.
Tare Level: Represents a unique pallet. Typically it contains a bar code number of the pallet label and pallet information such as weight and size. This level is used in some, but not all ASNs, depending on your Trading Partner’s requirements and the manner in which you ship your goods.
Pack Level: Identifies each carton in the shipment (or on the pallet, if the Tare Level is used). Usually it contains the bar code number of the label. Typically, ASNs contain a pack level.
Item Level: Represents an item that is shipped. Contains item information such as quantity and item IDs
Standard pack shipments have a simple structure:
Shipment – Order – Item – Carton
Pick and pack shipments tend to be more complex and can be structured in many different ways depending on how you conduct business and your Trading Partner’s requirements. Here are some examples:
Shipment – Order – Tare – Item
Shipment – Order – Pack – Item
Shipment – Order – Tare- Pack –Item
Well, that’s an overview of the ASN. eBridge offers a variety of solutions including the eBridge ASN Module and ASN webforms to meet your business needs. So if you need help with your ASN solution, give us a call, we are here to help!
Click here to watch a video that shows how to create an ASN in the ePortal, as well as many other helpful support videos.
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