5 things you need in a VAN provider

Value-added networks (VANs) have been around since the '80s, but that doesn't mean they look anything like they did back then. 

Going from expensive and unreliable dial-up connection to efficient internet protocols like AS2, VAN has evolved alongside point-to-point EDI. With all the options available today, here are five key qualities you should look for in a modern VAN solution. 

01 Flexibility

There's natural variety when it comes to the ways businesses communicate with partners. A VAN provider should put control in the hands of customers. You want to be able to choose whether you use point-to-point EDI, VAN connectivity, or a combination. This allows you to make the most economical decision and simplify partner rollout. 

02 Cost savings

Costs can add up when businesses rely on one platform to manage VAN and another to manage point-to-point EDI. A single point of management for both communication networks is ideal. That way, you can drastically reduce costs, especially if you've been paying too much for a VAN mailbox. 

03 Unbeaten productivity

Best-in-class VAN capabilities improve operational efficiency. For example, a fully integrated platform should offer a dashboard from which customers can track transactions. It should also enable worldwide connections to other VANs. These capabilities make onboarding faster and smoother. 

04 Long-term B2B expertise

While you want the flexibility of choosing between VAN and point-to-point EDI, there are times when you may not be sure what the best option is. B2B integration experts with a successful track record can help provide clarity on this front and leverage their business expertise to determine when VAN makes sense. 

05 Affordability

The market price for VANs may have dropped drastically over the years, but can still be expensive. That's because they rely on a more traditional approach to VAN management. Consider a more modern and efficient VAN approach that is simpler and more cost effective.

Want to see a modern, efficient, and cost-effective VAN in action?

Watch this on-demand demo of Axway Business Network

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