The EDIFACT DELJIT T-Set: Structure, Benefits & Use Cases

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) has formed the backbone of B2B communications for decades. And for good reason.

Its enablement of secure, streamlined, and automated exchanges of documents between trading partners has saved a significant amount of resources for businesses across a variety of sectors.

However while EDI has been around for a long while and will continue to be, the sheer depth of information around the topic is difficult for most businesses to fully grasp without external support. 

So today, as part of our ongoing library of guides exploring widely used EDI standards, messages, and transaction sets (T-Sets), we are going to delve into the EDIFACT DELJIT T-Set. We will cover everything you need to know for your business to address this crucial message with total expertise.

Suggested reading: Form your understanding of EDI standards by starting with our in-depth EDIFACT explainer!


The EDIFACT DELJIT (Delivery Just In Time) message is used in several different sectors,  but most often in the automotive industry. It provides detailed information about just-in-time delivery schedules, specifying:

  • The exact timing and sequence of deliveries
  • Details about products and quantities
  • Delivery instructions to meet precise production schedules with minimal inventory

The benefits of using EDIFACT DELJIT

While EDI standards and T-Sets generally have the same benefits of facilitating simpler yet secure communications, the EDIFACT DELJIT message has a particular set of advantages:

  • Improved supply chain efficiency: DELJIT messages enable precise scheduling of deliveries to closely match production schedules, ensuring materials arrive exactly when needed and enhancing the overall efficiency of the supply chain.
  • Reduced inventory costs: By facilitating just-in-time delivery, companies can significantly reduce inventory holding costs. This approach minimises the need for large storage spaces and reduces the capital tied up in stock.
  • Increased flexibility and responsiveness: The DELJIT message allows for quick adjustments to production schedules based on changing demands or supply chain disruptions, ensuring companies can respond more effectively to market changes.
  • Optimised production planning: Accurate and timely information on incoming deliveries allows manufacturers to optimise their production planning and scheduling, leading to more efficient use of resources and reduced waste.
  • Support for lean manufacturing: The just-in-time delivery information provided by DELJIT messages supports lean manufacturing principles by aligning deliveries closely with production needs, helping to reduce waste and improve the value stream within manufacturing processes.

Which industries benefit most from EDIFACT DELJIT?

There are several different industries that benefit from the deep level of information that EDIFACT DELJIT messages provide on deliveries. They include:

  • Just-In-Time manufacturing: DELJIT is integral to JIT manufacturing processes, where it’s used to coordinate the delivery of parts and materials to arrive exactly when needed for production, minimising inventory costs and enhancing efficiency.
  • The automotive industry: This industry, known for its complex supply chains and tight production schedules, uses DELJIT to manage the delivery of components from multiple suppliers to assembly lines, ensuring that parts arrive in a precise sequence and timing to meet production needs.
  • Electronics manufacturing: Similar to automotive, the electronics industry benefits from DELJIT to manage the timely delivery of various components needed for assembly of electronic goods, from smartphones to computers, where production schedules are tight and inventory space is limited.
  • Retail and eCommerce: For businesses that operate on a lean inventory model, DELJIT can help coordinate the delivery of goods to distribution centres and retail outlets just in time for sales promotions or seasonal peaks, reducing storage needs and ensuring product availability.
  • Healthcare and pharmaceuticals: In industries where products have short shelf lives or require specialised storage, DELJIT messages can help manage the timely delivery of medical supplies and pharmaceuticals to ensure availability without overstocking.
  • Aerospace and defense: These sectors often deal with highly complex components and assemblies. DELJIT messages facilitate the precise scheduling of part deliveries for manufacturing and maintenance processes, where timing and accuracy are critical.

What does an EDIFACT DELJIT message include?

To illustrate the segments of the EDIFACT DELJIT message, let’s take a look at an example of what it may look like.


Each of the above segments corresponds to a different purpose. Here, we’ve outlined what each one represents:

UNAUNA:+.? ‘Specifies the special characters used in the message, defining separators and terminators.
UNBUNB+UNOC:3+SENDERID:ZZZ+RECEIVERID:ZZZ+030101:1234+00000000000001++DELJIT’The beginning of the message, identifying the sender, receiver, date, time, and message reference.
UNHUNH+1+DELJIT:D:96A:UN:1.6′Message header, specifying the message type (DELJIT) and version.
BGMBGM+351+DELJIT001+9′Beginning of the message, indicating the document/message number and its function.
DTMDTM+137:20030101:102′Date/time/period segment for document/message date. Additional DTM segments specify delivery dates.
NADNAD+SU+SUPPLIER:92′Name and address of the supplier. A similar segment is used for the buyer.
LINLIN+1++PRODUCT:SA’Line item, identifying a specific product to be delivered.
PIAPIA+5+123456:SA’Additional product identification, providing detailed product information.
QTYQTY+1:1000′Quantity of the product to be delivered.
UNSUNS+S’Section control, indicating the end of the detail section.
UNTUNT+13+1′Message trailer, indicating the end of the message with the number of segments included.
UNZUNZ+1+00000000000001′End of the interchange, confirming the number of messages included.

The equivalents of EDIFACT DELJIT in other EDI formats

In understanding how best to use EDIFACT DELJIT within your communications, it’s also important to know its equivalents in other common EDI standards. Here’s a helpful guide:

EDI StandardEquivalent of EDIFACT DELJIT T-SetDescription
ANSI X12862 – Shipping ScheduleThe X12 862 transaction set is similar to the DELJIT and is used to communicate detailed shipping schedules. It specifies the exact timing and sequence for deliveries, including detailed information about products, quantities, and shipping instructions to support JIT production.
TRADACOMSDLS – Delivery ScheduleThe TRADACOMS DLS (Delivery Schedule) message serves a similar purpose to the DELJIT, providing information on scheduled deliveries of products. It is used primarily in the UK retail sector and includes details on delivery timing, quantities, and product specifications to support inventory management and production planning.
VDAVDA 4915 (JIT)Used primarily in the German automotive industry, this standard communicates just-in-time delivery schedules, detailing the timing, sequence, and specifications for shipments.
GS1 EANCOMDELJIT MessageA subset of EDIFACT managed by GS1, EANCOM includes a DELJIT message for just-in-time delivery information, focusing on retail and supply chain applications with global product identification standards.
ODETTEDELJIT MessageSimilar to EDIFACT’s DELJIT, used in the European automotive industry for just-in-time delivery schedules. It includes detailed information on delivery timing, quantities, and product specifications.
SAP IDocDELFOR and JITDELIn SAP systems, DELFOR (Delivery Forecast) and JITDEL (Just-In-Time Delivery) IDocs are used for communicating delivery schedules and just-in-time delivery instructions, respectively, within and across SAP environments.
Peppol BISDespatch AdviceWhile not a direct equivalent to DELJIT, Peppol BIS uses Despatch Advice for notifying the buyer about the dispatch of goods, which can be part of a JIT delivery process in the Peppol network.
UBL (Universal Business Language)Despatch AdviceSimilar to Peppol BIS, UBL’s Despatch Advice is used for informing about the dispatch of goods. UBL provides a standardised XML format for business documents, which can support JIT delivery information in a global context.

How the EDIFACT DELJIT message is processed

Here’s a general overview of how the DELJIT message is processed, keeping in mind that specific details might vary depending on the industry, the complexity of the supply chain, and the technological infrastructure of the parties involved.

1. Creation of the DELJIT message

  • Initiation: The process begins when the sender (typically a manufacturer or assembler) determines the need for specific goods or materials to be delivered at a precise time to support production schedules.
  • Compilation: Relevant data, including delivery schedules, product identification numbers, quantities, and any special handling instructions, are compiled into the DELJIT message format. This step often involves automated systems that pull information from production planning and inventory management systems.

2. Transmission of the message

  • EDI transmission: The completed DELJIT message is transmitted to the supplier through Electronic Data Interchange (EDI). This involves secure, standardised electronic communication channels, ensuring that the message is delivered quickly and accurately.
  • Acknowledgement: Upon receiving the DELJIT message, the supplier’s system may send back an acknowledgement receipt (e.g., an EDIFACT CONTRL message), confirming that the DELJIT message has been received and is being processed.

3. Processing by the receiver

  • Interpretation: The supplier’s EDI system interprets the DELJIT message, extracting key information such as delivery dates, quantities, and product specifications.
  • Integration: This information is then integrated into the supplier’s production, inventory, and logistics planning systems. Adjustments may be made to ensure that the requested deliveries can be met according to the schedule.

4. Fulfilment of the delivery schedule

  • Preparation: Based on the DELJIT instructions, the supplier prepares the goods for shipment. This may involve manufacturing or assembling products, conducting quality checks, and packaging the goods for transport.
  • Dispatch: The goods are dispatched according to the delivery schedule outlined in the DELJIT message. The supplier ensures that logistics operations are aligned with the delivery times and locations specified.

5. Confirmation of delivery

  • Delivery notification: Upon successful delivery of the goods, the supplier may send a delivery notification to the buyer, often using another EDI message, such as the EDIFACT DESADV (Despatch Advice) message, confirming the details of the shipment.
  • Reception and verification: The buyer receives the goods and verifies them against the DELJIT instructions to ensure that the delivery matches the requested schedule, quantities, and specifications.

6. Integration into production

  • Utilisation: The received goods are immediately integrated into the production process, aligning with the just-in-time manufacturing principles to minimise inventory and maximise efficiency.

7. Feedback and adjustment

  • Performance review: Both parties may review the performance of the delivery process, identifying any discrepancies or areas for improvement.
  • Adjustments: Future DELJIT messages may be adjusted based on feedback, ensuring continuous improvement of the just-in-time delivery process.

This process highlights the collaborative nature of just-in-time delivery systems, requiring close coordination and communication between suppliers and buyers. You have to ensure that you have proper, expert-led support to guide you here — otherwise, you may risk bigger gaps in your communication and suffer from delayed deliveries and poor customer satisfaction as a result.

Suggested reading: Learn more about the EDIFACT standard with our guide on the EDIFACT INVOIC message.

How Data Interchange can help

In a world where supply chains are getting more complex by the day, having a standard way to communicate delivery schedules like the EDIFACT DELJIT message is paramount. It’s not just about making trading and supplying easier; it’s about staying competitive, responsive, and, most importantly, profitable.

At Data Interchange, we strive to help our clients achieve those goals with our leading EDI solutions and expert-led support. We’re here to guide you on everything through EDI integrations, best practices, and more — all across a wide range of industries.

To find out more about what we do and how we can help your business, just book a chat with one of our experts.

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