Set up a Trading Partnership as a Follower

A Trading Partnership is a relation between two EDI Accounts that contains at least one RelationshipRelationship - A Relationship is a directional EDI data connection between two EDI Accounts in Orderful. Each Relationship is either “inbound” or “outbound” and is for a particular document type (for example an 850 Purchase Order).. If you are a FollowerFollower - A Trading Partner that follows EDI Guidelines is known as a “Follower”. The company that defines EDI Guidelines is known as a "Leader". who wants to trade EDI documents with a Leader, you must create a new Trading Partnership by sending a Trade Request to your Leader.

To create a new Trading Partnership as a Follower, you will need to:

  1. Create a Trade Request.
  2. (Only for Unclaimed Leaders) Gather your Trading Partner's requirements.
  3. Configure your Relationship.

Accept or Create a Trade Request

First you will need to start a new Partnership by accepting an existing Trade Request or sending a new one.

To accept an existing Trade Request:

  1. Go to your Trade Requests settings.
  2. Click on an entry under "Inbound Requests". This will open a sidebar on the right with further information about the Trade Request.
  3. Click Accept.

To create a new Trade Request:

  1. Go to your Trade Requests settings.
  2. Click on Create Trade Request.
  3. Fill out the form that pops up. Since you are the Follower, be sure to select "My trading partner (I am the Follower).
  4. Once completed, you will be returned to the Trade Requests page where you will see your new request under "Outbound Requests" with a status of "Pending".

After you submit your Trade Request, you will receive an email from Orderful that will contain a link to a form. If you know your Leader's requirements, you can enter them here. Otherwise, you will have to gather their requirements.

Gather requirements

If you are a Follower sending a Trade Request to an unclaimed Leader, you will need to gather their document trading requirements. You can gather these requirements from your Leader in any way you like. For convenience, we have included an email template that you can fill out and send to your Leader:


If you received a Trade Request from a claimed Leader who is already in our system, you can skip this step.

  1. Copy the template below and paste it into a new email message.
  2. Customize the [placeholder text].
  3. Review any *NOTES* and add information, if relevant
  4. Add any additional context that's relevant to your business use case
  5. Send the email to your trading partner and ask them to reply with any questions or comments
Dear [Trading Partner Name],

We are reaching out to begin our EDI implementation with you and gather your EDI Requirements. You will find our EDI profile [attached].

    *NOTE* if you do not have an EDI profile, be sure you outline the below information:

  • ISA Qualifier/ID:
  • Transactions [customer name] will be receiving from you:
  • Transactions [customer name] will be sending you:
  • EDI platform (Orderful) connectivity information: Click Here
  1. Preferred Email Address for EDI
  2. Production ISA Qualifier
  3. Production ISA ID
  4. Do you have a test ID? (Yes/No)
  5. Connectivity Type (AS2 is preferred)
  6. Do you have testing scenarios? (Yes/no)
  7. Please attach:
    • Test Transactions for the transaction types we are trading if your system is not capable of testing via an active connection.
    • Your EDI Guidelines
    • Vendor Onboarding form (if required)

We use Orderful, an API platform for trading EDI: Link to Orderful connectivity information.

We are looking forward to testing and trading with you soon!

Please let me know if you have any questions or would like to have a phone call.

[Customer Name]

Once you or your Trading Partner submit the form, the Orderful team will review your Trade Request and either:

  • Get in touch for follow-up if there are requirements that are missing, incomplete or inaccurate.
  • Accept your trade request and configure the relationships on your Trading Partner’s side. You are now ready to start configuring and testing your relationships.

Once the request is accepted its validation status will be updated to "Accepted", however it will only be visible if you check "Show hidden" on the upper right of the Trade Requests screen.

Configure your Relationship

Now that your Trade Request has been accepted, you will have one or more new Relationships visible in your Relationship settings.

You will have one Relationship for each Transaction Type that your Leader has defined in their scenarios.

Until your Leader enters in the required information, the status of the Relationship will remain as "Pending setup by partner".

Once your partner has configured their end of the Relationship, the status will change to "Configure setup", and this point you can select the Relationship and configure the following:

  • Data format: The data format of the document you will send or receive.
  • Version: (e.g. 4010).
  • Guideline
  • Communication Channel: (Inbound only) Choose a Communication Channel for transactions you receive in the Live and Test stream.
    • If you want to receive transactions in both Test and Live streams on the same Communication Channel, you can tick the checkbox "Use selected for Test Communication Channel".
  • Receive functional acknowledgements (Outbound only) If the Data Format is X12, you can select this checkbox to receive 997 Functional Acknowledgements.
    • If you choose to receive functional acknowledgment, you must then choose a Live Communication Channel for acknowledgments received for transactions in the Live and Test stream.
    • If you want to receive functional acknowledgments for transactions in both Test and Live streams on the same Communication Channel, you can tick the checkbox "Use selected for Test Communication Channel".
  • Timeout Time: (Outbound only) Defines how long you want wait for a functional acknowledgment from your partner before a transaction is set as "Overdue".

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