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Gain complete visibility over your purchasing commitments

Finance professionals know that purchase order commitments have financial consequences. Failing to manage them proactively can adversely affect the profit & loss account while making it challenging to manage cash flow effectively.

We’ll help you build an easy-to-use platform that connects directly to your finance system, providing budgeting controls at the point of authorisation and full visibility of all commitments at the point of order.

What is our Purchase Order Processing solution?

The Purchase Order Processing (POP) solution delivers an efficient straight-through process, delivering user compliance through engagement and, thereby, control over spend. POP is an end-to-end purchase order processing solution based on line item level approvals.

This self-service Purchasing software is easy to use, browser-based and tablet ready. Requisitions, once approved, leave the employee in control to place the order and receive the goods.

Finance has full visibility of all commitments at the point of order placement and receipt of items. Touchless approval of supplier invoices can be enabled with an automated three-way match.

All approved invoices are automatically posted to your finance system.

Requisition

All Users can requisition items – it is as easy as shopping online. Users can create a basket of Items, and when they are ready, they can select Items and send them off for approval. Instead of just creating Items, Users can search a “catalogue” of Items that have been ordered by Users from within the business before.

Each line can be coded in accordance with the Finance system structures, but the codes can easily be found and selected by typing part of either the descriptive name or the code itself. In POP, all approval is done at the line level, and Users can see who owns the budget and who will be the default approver for the Item.

Users can track all Items submitted for approval. If an Item is sat with an Approver who is away, the User can, with a single click, escalate the request to another Approver.

Authorisations: Approve or Reject

Budget Holders or their Delegates are notified of the Items that require approval. Users can change the number of notifications in a day to suit their preference.

Items can quickly be approved or, with a reason note, be rejected back to the User. If the Authoriser would rather change the Item before approving it, they can do that too, and these changes are marker pen style highlighted when the User next looks at the Item.

All Items for approval can be grouped by User, Budget, Supplier and more. By grouping them by Budget (GL Code), the budget holder can see the year-to-date financial commitment (the value of received Items and items on orders not yet received) for the account code and make an informed decision.

Both rejected and approved Items are returned to the User for correction/deletion or raising in an Order as appropriate.

PO Raising, Sending & Receipting

The system allows approved items to be raised in a Purchase Order, which can be emailed to the Supplier by the system or handled manually (phone, post, fax or online). As you might expect, the Purchase Order PDF document is automatically saved to the Invu Document Management system for future reference and discoverability. The Purchase Order document layout is driven by a customisable template, and you can also append a Purchasing terms and conditions page to control your Commitment further.

Once an order is raised, Users may receipt items on a Purchase Order which will aid the 3-way matching process once an Invoice arrives. Receipting is done at the line level, and lines may be partially received. With POP, it is also possible to quickly receipt a Purchase Order when processing the Invoice, which helps in the common case of a missed receipting step.

Invoice Capture & Matching

The POP solution includes a complete Invoice Capture module. The AP team uses this module to capture all Invoices into the system. Invoices can be brought in from a scanner, email folder, or network folder and all are processed in the same way. The module automatically extracts (“reads”) most of the data from the Invoices (including PO references) and enables the AP clerk to add narrative or correct any data errors. The Invoice PDF’s are then saved to the Document Management system and fed into the Purchasing software for Invoice Matching & Posting. Again all Invoices in the Document store are fully searchable (header data and on-the-page content) and rapidly retrieved when needed.

Once captured, the invoices undergo a three-way match process. One key requirement for today’s customers is “Straight through processing”. This is where, when an Invoice matches the receipted amount from a Purchase Order, the Invoice is passed on for posting without human review or intervention. This is configurable in POP.

POP provides a powerful user interface to make quick corrections and distribute that work to the authorised approver to ensure accountability. Only once the Invoice is fully accounted for and authorised is it released for posting. Of course, POP works with all of our ERP connectors for posting Invoices to the Finance system. Also, all Purchase Orders and Invoices are stored in the Invu Document Management system with full metadata to aid searching and linking.

Exception Handling

Not receipted:
Often, the receipting has not been updated by the time the Invoice arrives, which prevents an auto-match that could otherwise have occurred. Invu Purchasing recognises this scenario and enables the authoriser to also side-effect receipting and approve the Invoice with a single click. Simple and fast.

Rounding differences:
POP will allow for a configured rounding tolerance to enable more automatic matching cases and eases manual adjustments. The adjustments form separate detail lines added to the Invoice at the point of final authorisation. They may be consolidated with other lines before posting if desired.

Delivery Charges:
Delivery charges may be added at the Purchase Order level and do not require receipting.

Sundry & new Supplier:
With POP, Users can be allowed to request items from a Supplier currently not included on the ERP system supplier master file. If the items are approved by the Budget Holder (who can see this is a new Supplier), then it goes to Purchasing Admin, who can decide if the Supplier should be formalised (i.e. created in the Finance system) or to allow a Sundry purchase to go through, or to reject the request. By allowing such requests, the system ensures that all Purchasing can go through the system rather than be worked around.

Non PO Invoices:
Even when Invoices come through that are not PO related, they can still be processed with proper authorisation. The same authorisation levels are applied to Invoices as well as Orders so that the Invoice can be coded and authorised by one or more budget holders. Keeping all Invoices in the same process ensures good data for reporting and a consistent audited process.

Reporting & Visiblity

With all Order, Receipting and Invoicing data at your fingertips, combined with a full audit trail of activity, complete visibility of the Purchasing activity is easy with open Purchase Orders, Commitment and Accruals down to line level detail.

Exception Reports can be defined to pick up on long-lived Purchase Orders, distributions of activity and spend across staff, codes, time and suppliers.

Spend analysis:
Understanding spend and behaviours requires having good data. By using a system for all Purchases and Invoices, the data will be valid and will provide good insight.

ERP Integration & Posting

POP is easily integrated with almost any Finance/ERP system. Lookup data is taken from the Finance system, and Invoices are posted into it. How the posting is achieved depends on the Finance system and your preferences – and is one of the following:

  1. Dedicated Posting Module: For Sage 200 or 50, we offer a dedicated API-driven module for posting Invoices. This is an out-of-the-box tightly integrated solution. More Integrations are being created all the time.
  2. Custom export of data for ERP Import. We are creating custom exporters for a range of ERP products, such as Nav, AX, SAP, Sun, and Agresso. More importantly, we can further customise them for a particular customer need, such as multiple finance systems, priority or split responsibilities or special posting requirements. This approach separates concerns perfectly, leaving the Finance system responsible for data checks on imports into the ledgers.
  3. Consultancy/Self Import: For ERP products with no API or limited import features, we will work with the ERP vendor, a consulting partner, or the IT team itself to achieve a proper Invoice posting function.

Approval Policy & Delegation

For some businesses, Purchase Order approval can be routed based on the Schedule of Authorities. In addition, POP also enables Budget Holders to define their own Delegates – staff who can authorise against the Holder’s budget codes at lower levels.

Segregation of duties is also preserved as the system will ensure that Requisitions made by staff with Authorisation rights are not routed to themselves for approval. As with many features, this can be switched off for smaller businesses that need simplicity above all else.

Benefits of POP

Requisition

The requisition process is designed with the User in mind – it is as easy as shopping online!

Authorisation

Items can be quickly approved or rejected (with a reason provided to the shopper).

PO Raising & Sending

Approved requisitions enable the shopper to raise the PO with multiple delivery methods.

Receipting

Enables partial or full receipting of line items, facilitating three-way-matching.

Invoice Capture

Automatically extracts the relevant data from each invoice.

Invoice Matching

Once captured, the invoices can be matched against multiple Purchase Orders.

Reporting & Visibility

Visibility of Purchasing activity is made simple with a full audit trail and reporting capabilities.

Discover Purchase Order Processing in action…

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