Supplier invoices in business

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08 min read

The role that invoice/bills play in maintaining a record of transactions in a business cannot be underestimated. Supplier invoices are one among the many kinds of invoices that are used in business. A supplier invoice is a document used to record the money owed to the suppliers and the associated taxes applicable on that transaction.

A supplier invoice doesn’t necessarily mean that the buyer himself is raising an invoice. It is just a term that’s frequently used in business parlance. Supplier invoices are just one among the many types of invoices, including credit invoices, debit invoices, interim invoices, final invoices and commercial invoices, to mention a few.

What is a supplier invoice?

Commonly, invoices are used to record monetary transactions between two parties. A supplier invoice depicts money owed to the supplier in exchange for the goods supplied by him or services rendered by him. Essentially, it is a bill of sale from the supplier’s point of view, placing him in the accounts payable category. The unpaid goods or services that he supplies shall be displayed in the invoice/bill. The invoice/bill shall contain the following particulars:-

  • Name, address and GSTIN or TIN of the supplier
  • Invoice number
  • Date of issue of invoice
  • HSN Code for goods/SAC for services
  • Name, address and GSTIN of the buyer (recipient)
  • Description of goods – Quantity, rate, value
  • Total amount payable (with the tax and cess break-up)
  • Signature of the supplier

Benefits of a supplier invoice

  • Prompt Payments

Invoice/bills usually display the date of issue of invoice, and more often than not, the date by which payment is expected. This enables the businessman to ensure that payments are made promptly to ensure a good relationship with the supplier and avoid any inconveniences to him.

  • Serves as a Reminder

The dates on the invoice/bills serve as a reminder to ensure timeliness in making payments. Moreover, the details of the invoice, such as the description of goods or services provided, give the business a better picture of what goods have been supplied or services availed, as the case may be. 

  • Serves as a Record-Keeping Tool

Businesses often retain all records for eight years to produce them as requested by the authorities if such a case may arise. The invoice/bills serve as a record if any discrepancy regarding a particular bill should arise, which is common in business.

  • Serves as an Advertising Tool

Presently, invoices/bills contain all the supplier’s important business details, including his business logo. The supplier invoices also promote brand awareness in the way that they’re designed and presented to the customer.

Why should you automate the raising and issuance of supplier invoices?

The manual labour in the creation and documentation of invoices was always a problem for businesses since unnecessary time and money was spent on the same. Automation came in as a saving grace for most businesses because of the following reasons:-

  • Saves Time and Costs

Labour accounts for more than half of the costs incurred concerning accounts payables. This is also because manual labour in invoicing is also accompanied by human error and duplication errors leading to inconsistencies and inaccuracies in data. Since the process is automated, one can expect standardisation in the invoice format and the invoice being raised at the right time without any delay whatsoever.

  • Steady Workflow

Automation allows for a steady workflow process that is relatively standardised, and the steps involved in invoice billing will be consistently applied from time to time. There is no delay in processing invoices, as was the case with manual labour in the invoicing procedure. In the case of manual labour, bottlenecks in the process were always a hassle. Automation eliminates that obstacle, thus ensuring a smooth flow of operations.

  • Easy to Perform an Audit

Since automation involves the use of accounting software, it brings with it a variety of functionalities. The ability to generate reports instantly is a big bonus feature. The generated reports will be depicted in a format that is pleasing to the eye and helps the user identify any inconsistencies or discrepancies that may be present in them. Since the audit is usually an ongoing process, information and reports can be generated as and when necessary. This saves time and allows for the completion of a smooth audit procedure.

  • Timeliness of Payments

Payments are one of the most delicate aspects of a business. Financial reputation goes a long way towards building a business. Whether one needs financing from a bank, a financial institution or any other moneylender, one of the deciding factors is financial reputation. To ensure you maintain a good reputation, automation will have to become your best friend. 

With automation, the tracking of each invoice becomes relatively easier, ensuring payments are made promptly. Moreover, an eye can always be kept on the invoice related cash flows as well. Automation also enables you to schedule dates and set up an auto-pay feature for recurring invoice billing, thus ensuring you stay on top of things.