What does a Control Number in an EDI transaction mean?
Control numbers are assigned by the outbound translator at the Interchange, Group and Document level. Each level has a “record” with indicates the start and stop for that level. The Interchange (the whole EDI envelope for that transmission) has an ISA / IEA (start and stop) record. The same is true for the GS and GE records for the Group Level, and the individual documents are indicated by an ST record at the start of an individual document (e.g. an invoice) and SE indicating the end of that invoice.
While ISA Control Numbers are likely sequential, for various reasons they may not be received in sequential order (timing, location from which the transaction was sent, etc.). It is critical, however, that they are unique within the trading partner relationship, indicated by the Party ID in the header of the interchange level. Individual document control numbers within a group always start with 001. It is the combination of the ISA, Group and Document Control Number that identifies an individual document.
* Source: RVCF Supplier Guide Summary
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