All You Ever Need to Know About Purchase Orders

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What are purchase orders? Why are they important? How do I use them effectively?

This is a critical topic – purchase orders (or POs) and their effective usage are a vital component to any successful business. This post is intended to provide both a clear explanation of purchase order processes for beginners, as well as highlight tips for improving these processes for seasoned finance or procurement specialists.

So…what are purchase orders?

Purchase Order ExamplePurchase orders are documents sent from a buyer to a supplier with a request for an order. The type of item, the quantity and agreed upon price are generally (should be!) printed on the purchase order – the more specific the order, the more details included, the more effective the purchase order will be.

When a seller (aka, supplier, vendor, etc) accepts a purchase order, a legally binding contract is formed between the two parties. In addition, the buyer should always clearly and explicitly communicate their requests to the seller so there is no confusion when the purchase order is received.

Also, in the event the buyer refuses payment, the seller is protected because the purchase order is a binding contract between both parties.

Lastly, some commercial lenders will use purchase orders as a reference to provide financial assistance to an organization.

How are purchase orders different from an invoice?

Buyers draft purchase orders. Sellers, on the other hand, prepare invoices, once a payment has been received. In some cases, buyers are provided an invoice, with a payment due date.

Both the purchase order and the invoice contain similar details. The invoice generally references the purchase order number as well, in order to confirm that both documents contain the same information and correspond to each other. The main difference between the two is the technical details found on the purchase order are not included on the invoice.

Example:

John the purchaser has been notified that a department needs a new set of desks. He creates a purchase order with the quantity and specific requirements (size etc.) for the desks.

The company responsible for selling/manufacturing the desks then receives the order. Once they confirm they are able to supply the desks with the required specifications, they approve the PO and take the payment. Once that payment is received, the desks are shipped and an invoice is sent back to John the purchaser.

The invoice confirms the payment was received, or alternatively, the due date of the payment. John then checks the invoice, the purchase order and the shipping slip to ensure that all three match up.

Why are purchase orders important to your business?

Many organizations unwisely forego purchase orders because they perceive the paperwork to be a hassle that slows things down, or simply because they already have a working relationship with vendors. When businesses start small they tend to have an organic purchasing process. Over time, however, that process changes as companies develop relationships with their sellers. Once a company grows and the purchasing demands become more specific, urgent, and/or complex, communication challenges can arise if a purchase order isn’t used or certain details are not correct on the order.

If a buyer receives their order and it does not comply with the desired specifications, if there is no purchase order to use as a reference, it can be a nightmare for both parties to determine where the request went wrong. At that point, it’s likely that both payment and an invoice was sent, which puts both parties in a significantly more complicated legal situation.

A purchase order provides legal clarity and concrete instructions for the seller, as well as a concrete paper trail that can be used as a point of reference for when things go wrong.

Why are manual procedures inefficient?

If your organization is currently using a paper-based procurement process, you are likely creating excessive documents. Most companies will process up to seven documents during a purchasing cycle. This includes requisitions, purchase orders, quotations, order acknowledgments, advice notes, goods received notes, packing slips,  and invoices. That’s a lot of documents to produce – and keep track of – for a single purchase.

As much as good record keeping is vital for effective and efficient purchasing and procurement, there are problems with paper-based records. Paperwork can easily be lost, damaged, or accidentally destroyed. With paper, it’s often hard to spot duplicate requests, purchases, or invoices, or missed transactions – all of which can cost your company time and money. Using paper also requires an efficient and regularly updated filing system which consumes space and man hours in order to work effectively. E-procurement software, such as Procurify, which digitizes the entire procurement process is a great solution to this problem.

Purchase Orders

How do I integrate purchase orders into my business?

You’re going to have to take a step back and observe how your current business handles purchasing and, subsequently, envision how you’d like to control what employees can buy and how they process these transactions.

Integrating requisitions and PO’s

Assuming your organization doesn’t currently use purchase orders, it is also likely that you’re not managing the requests your employees make when they want to purchase something. Using purchase orders, especially through an e-procurement system like Procurify, will allow for the most control and visibility into where your employees are spending the company’s money.

Purchase requisitions

Requisitions are requests your employees make for materials or items they need to do their job. Many organizations simply allow their employees to email a manager their request, and then have that person make the necessary purchases. Adding requisitions creates two important benefits – the ability to manage a budget for employee spending and the opportunity to take advantage of volume discounts on large orders. Most organizations will allocate a budget to a purchase once a requisition has been submitted.

You will need to create a standardized requisition document, which all employees must then use. That standardized procedure ensures that receiving requisitions does not waste your employee’s time. Procurify can automatically create digital requisitions, which can be sent to the appropriate purchaser automatically.

Budgets

As employees begin to draft requisitions, you’ll be able to create an average monthly spend and track what your employees are purchasing. This means you can start analyzing how they use supplies and identify opportunities for savings. An approver will be the person managing the budget. If employees go over budget, the approver may not approve all the requisitions that are not immediately necessary.

Volume discounts

Once employees begin submitting requisitions, the approver can more easily identify purchasing patterns. The approver can then submit bulk orders and request discounts if they are available. If the requests are created digitally, it can significantly reduce processing time because frequently requested items can be added to a catalog from the best supplier at the best price.

From requisition to purchase order

Once requests have become a standard process in your organization, the next step is to create the purchase order process. This is likely as simple as contacting suppliers and informing them that from now on you’ll be submitting a purchase order before sending payment for goods. The supplier will likely be happy about this because it will significantly help both parties.Once your approver has some requests that need to be fulfilled, they complete a purchase order and send it off to the seller. The seller, if necessary, will communicate any concerns or issues with the purchase,

Once your approver has some requests that need to be fulfilled, they complete a purchase order and send it off to the seller. The seller, if necessary, will communicate any concerns or issues with the purchase, otherwise, they will ship the order and invoice once payment is received.

Integrating both requisitions and purchase orders will significantly increase your ability to track expenses and remove a lot of headaches associated with employee/company purchasing. Visibility in your company’s spending is critical and this process will help you achieve that.

FREE WHITEPAPER: Check out the ‘All You Need To Know About Purchase Orders’ white paper if you’re interested in reading an extended version with links to free templates and services online.

What do PO’s look like?

Purchase orders are, typically, a standard document. They generally contain company information (name etc.) and shipping details (address), vendor information (name and address), order information (product, price and quantity), as well as additional details to the vendor. Many companies have a standardized purchase order document with stock information to ensure consistency.

With Procurify, purchase orders look a little different. Instead of being a standard document, purchase orders are generated after a purchaser has compiled all the required orders for a certain vendor. General ledger codes are assigned to each purchase order, ensuring easy integration into your accounting procedures.

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About Author

Kenneth Loi

Kenneth is Chief Operating Officer and Founder of Procurify and oversees several business divisions including Operations, Product Management and Customer Relations. Kenneth's vision is to assemble the dream team to help build an enterprise product that helps solve critical business problems yet is intuitively easy to use.

50 Comments

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  2. Do purchase orders require terms and conditions? I mean, could someone just write something on a napkin, sign it, and call it a purchase order, and it would be a legally binding contract?

    Not sure if it matters, but I’m in California.

    Thanks!

    • Sean Kolenko

      Hello Cath,

      Thanks for the question.

      A purchase order does need terms – specifically types, quantities, and agreed prices for products or services. What makes a purchase order a legally binding contract is its acceptance by the seller. So, technically speaking, if you included the aforementioned details on a napkin and it was accepted by the seller, it would be good to go.

      With that said, you might have a hard time convincing a seller to accept a purchase order in such a form. Purchasing best practice is to use a standard purchase order form – such as the one electronically generated in Procurify – for all purchases.

      Thanks!

      • Hey Ves,
        If you haven’t been using purchase orders then you’re going to have to find another way of making sure your invoices and payments align.

        This is a fairly common problem in construction which is why three way matching using purchase orders is considered a best practice.

        In the past, with purchase orders being paper based, three way matching might not have been very practical because of time and location constraints, but today we have digital solutions that makes organization easy.

        Hope this helps,
        -matt

  3. I received a purchase order for two items
    1. The product which is covered for a year of warranty
    2. An AMC for 3 years post warranty period.

    The product was delivered and the warranty period was over. Both parties were expected to sign an AMC contract which did not happen. Now I have payment dispute with the buyer on another PO and therefore want to cut all association with the buyer. Therefore I do not want to enter into the AMC agreement
    My question is that since I have delivered and invoiced for one item in the PO, is it required that I provide the second item? Can I refuse to enter into the AMC agreement and not raise an invoice?

    • Hey Kevin,

      Sorry about the delayed response.

      First off, this should not be taken as legal advice. It’s just my understanding of Purchase Orders.

      Creating a purchase order is really just the first step in the purchase to pay process. The PO protects the seller in case the buyer refuses to pay for goods delivered or services rendered in the future. A purchase order doesn’t bind the vendor to produce a good unless further contracts are signed or other agreements are made.

      A purchase order is an expression of interest from the buyer that they desire a good or service from a particular vendor. The Purchase Order would still need to accepted by the vendor or seller.

      You can refuse to accept purchase orders.

      If you already accepted the terms for the two items then breaking the agreement for the second item may cause problems. You may run into legal issues, with punishments set out in the agreement, usually in the form of a fine.

      Hope this helps.

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  6. Can a buyer / purchase in charge verify invoices ? I am a buyer in my company and I am being told to verify invoice and the finance rely on making payments based on my verification. Is it a good practice ?

    • Yes, as the buyer, it’s good practice to verify invoices before payment.

      The buyer is the best person in the organization to verify if the invoiced goods/services match with what the company requested (quantity, unit cost, etc).

  7. James Bradley on

    Dear Sirs,
    As MD of my small engineering company, I write out Purchase Orders as outlined above but often the metal parts suppliers that should be producing the parts I request, don’t produce the parts on time (if at all) as detailed in my Purchase Orders.
    1, what is legal ‘acceptance’ of my Purchase Orders? IE small engineering companies often don’t any acknowledgement, but just produce the parts and phone me or wait for me to ask if they have produced the parts yet. So, I guess if no definite ‘acceptance’, my POs are not legally binding on these suppliers? Is that correct. So what is ‘acceptance’?
    2, How can I make these suppliers hurry up and produce the parts in the time stated on the POs (and initially verbally agreed dates by phone before hand) and can I apply penalties?
    Many thanks in anticipation.

    • Thank you for your questions, and thank you for being so concise.

      Legal “Acceptance” of a Purchase Order is where the Supplier/Vendor actually signs the acceptance of the order by email or fax that indeed have capacity to fulfill your order. Up until recently, many companies have not had to ask for explicit “acceptance” of their purchase orders because they had a longstanding relationship with the suppliers and each “expected” that the po would be accepted and acted upon. Having said that, best practice has also been to ensure that the supplier/vendor had indeed received the po in the first place. Many times I have followed up on a po the day after sending it to a supplier only to hear that “The dog ate the po” so, “No” they didn’t have it or processed it. If you treat this as a lesson and I will use the example of paper PO’s here;
      Day 1 – create and send po to supplier/vendor, file pops sent today in a folder “PO’s sent NOT confirmed”
      Day 2 – Call or email all the suppliers/vendors and confirm they received the po’s that were sent. Also ask if they can fulfill the order and when you can expect the goods to arrive. Make notes on the po and file the po in the “PO’s issued/Good Not Received” folder
      Weekly – go through the “PO’s issued/Good Not Received” folder and follow up with the suppliers regarding status of the orders. Making any new notes on the PO’s. Any PO’s that have goods received in full, move to the folder. “Completed PO’s”
      In answer to your question: “How can I make these suppliers hurry up and produce the parts in the time stated on the PO’s” It’s not so much about making them do anything as it is to know where you stand and be clear from the start. I would highly recommend having a clause on your PO that states: “All items listed on this PO are required by (date) in full. IF you are not able to provide all of the items listed on this PO by the date, advise us immediately and do not accept this order” Another term that is used, though not as well is “Time is of the essence for the delivery of this order” and finally, you can impose penalties for non-performance as long as you have those terms listed on your PO and they have signed acceptance of the order.
      I hope this helps for your future orders. The Best practice is always to have good relationships with your suppliers and have them clearly understand what it is and when it is you need from them. You are not alone, this same argument comes up with quality of product delivered issues.

  8. James Bradley on

    Dear Sirs, sorry, in my last email: ‘often don’t any acknowledgement’ should read ‘often don’t send any acknowledgement’.
    Regards
    James

  9. which department of any organization makes and maintains the purchase orders?
    Either sourcing department or planning department?

    • Brittany Whitmore
      Brittany Whitmore on

      Hi Naveed,

      It depends on the organization – but typically it is done by the purchasing/procurement department, operations or finance.

    • I believe planning should do it, they would gain ownership and relay on themselves for the delivery on time of the orders and sourcing can focuse on strategic projects and savings.

      what does the experts think about this?

      • Hey Israel,

        Great point on Naveed’s comment.

        Purchase orders are normally maintained within a system, whether physical or electronic. Whose job it is to make sure ‘paperwork’ is accurate will depend on the size of an organization, the industry and just the company’s unique culture.

        For example: The marketing department might be responsible for issuing a purchase order to buy ad placement in the media. The controller/accounts payable department might be responsible for receiving the invoice and making sure payment matches the amount of the purchase order. Marketing might also be responsible for ensuring the services received match what was ordered through the purchase order.

        This same general process can be seen in all kinds of purchasing within companies.

  10. Purchase orders need to be signed by both parties, With out signing means that you have not agreed to the terms and condition and there is not a bonded document between the two parties.

    • If we look at a purchase order as a contract then it would make sense that the document would need to be signed by two parties.

      If one party were to sign it first then send it off to the 2nd party, the first party would essentially be agreeing to the contract but the purchase order wouldn’t be binding until the 2nd party signed as well.

      Nevertheless, the first party to sign should treat the PO as binding regardless of the action of the 2nd to minimize risk.

  11. Hello,

    I am an intern at my company and currently am working on a project and have some questions. I work as a buyer for my company which has a large warehouse. The goal of one portion of my project is to see how our suppliers interpret our purchase orders to determine if we should stick with a general due in DC date or go to a shipping window? I was just wondering if maybe their was a standard on how purchase orders are interpreted from the supplier side? Like what verbage is normally used? What is the typical terminology on when their order is due? Right now we just have a “promised date” which we interpret as the date its due in our DC. We feel that suppliers may interpret this differently. Would you know a good place to look in regards to industry standards regarding these issues.

  12. Hello Dylan,

    The “Delivery Date” on your purchase order should reflect the date that you actually require the goods to be on your job site/in your warehouse.

    When a purchase order is generated automatically for replenishment, the factors that are taken into consideration are the suppliers standard lead time for the item, as well as number of days until current inventory is exhausted or the item is required to fulfill a work order.

    In most cases, a supplier will look at all of the items on a purchase order and attempt to fulfill the order complete. In some cases, this means holding up items on hand until other items are available.

    Depending on the relationship that you have with your supplier, they may call you and ask if you want to hold the order and ship complete, or if there are items on the order that you require right away they can ship partial.

    Best practices indicate that when you send a supplier a purchase order, the supplier will review the order and send back (at minimum) hand written beside each item on your purchase order the quantity currently available to ship and the date that each item can be shipped. Especially in the case of backordered items.

    Your next move is to communicate which items you require immediately or can wait for and/or let the supplier know that you are cancelling the item(s) that are backordered or the entire purchase order to order from a different supplier that can deliver these items in a timely fashion.

    The suppliers “interpretation” of the expected delivery date on your purchase order is just that. The date that you expect the items to arrive at your site.

    If you are having difficulty with the supplier delivering to your required dates, you may have to ask 1. if you are allowing a reasonable amount of time from source to destination 2. Speaking with the supplier to learn if they have changed their business practices and are now “making to order” rather than carrying inventory 3. have they changed shipping companies 4. Do you have a contract in place with the supplier stating that they must carry inventory on your behalf 5. Any other changes that are affecting delivery?

    Finally, shipping windows are typically used in cases of low dollar value low criticality items that orders can be held and shipped together on a regular frequency. Such as all items from Supplier A can be batched and shipped the last Friday of the month.

    Also please see my previous post in this string regarding best practices for Purchase Order processing

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  15. A Purchase order was raised once but sent to a supplier twice, with the exact same details, in error.

    The supplier then delivered the goods twice and have said that we cannot return the items as they are specifically made. They have therefore invoiced us twice. I have paid both sets of invoices as the account was put on stop due to non payment.

    I need to know where we stand legally as to whether we can claim the money back as surely that is the point of a purchase order?

    • Nitant

      Thanks for reaching out, Tracy. And sorry to hear about your situation. Do not consider this any kind of legal advice because I’m not qualified to offer it. I will say that typically every Purchase Order should have a unique identifier (i.e. the Purchase Order Number) printed on it. Ideally, the invoice, issued by the seller, should reference the PO number as well. If your Purchase Order had a unique PO Number on it, it would have been easier for the seller to realize that the order may have been erroneously duplicated, at the time of generating an invoice for it.

      Hope this helps.

  16. Hello, could you please let me know which department at the company should request and collect the Purchase Orders? we have an international department, which is mostly interested in sales forecast and provide the updated 3 mnth forecast figures to the common server, opening for the all relevant depts. Based on the provided sales forecast which department is responsible for PO and should ask the customer or remind them to send PO for the upcoming month and collect these POs? many thanks.

    • Nitant

      Thanks for reaching out, Lale. The department that is directly dealing with your customers should ideally be held accountable for both receiving and storing Purchase Orders from your buyers. To ensure a clear audit trail, this department should also insist that the customer issue a Purchase Order for and, more importantly, prior to every transaction with your company.

      It might be, understandably, difficult for your customers (or buyers) to issue a PO for every purchase they want to make and this is because often times, their buying needs may be routine, repetitive and urgent. With an agile spend management solution like Procurify, your vendor can consolidate a large number of such needs into a single Purchase Order in seconds.

      In my experience, vendors and suppliers can only do so much to ensure that their clients follow proper purchasing procedures — this is one of the reasons why we, at Procurify, are trying to transform the Spend Culture of companies so that they are able to purchase better, smarter and more easily.

    • This really depends on your organizations unique process. If you’re using a paper based purchase order system it would be a good idea to leave a copy with the purchaser, give one to the receiving department so they can match it against the shipping document, and one to the AP department so that they can match it against the invoice.

      Having an electronic system would greatly improve the organization and storage of supporting documents. Everyone could then access the files online and it would allow you to three way match much more efficiently.

      Plus you could reduce the time everyone needs to spend creating paperwork, filing it, and then trying to dig it up during audits. Your filing cabinets will thank you.

  17. Hello, could you please advise me regarding our situation. We are a small company and we sent a purchase order to a seller who was to provide us with a certificate. During few month, for various reasons (we could not provide the correct documents), the certificate was not provided. Our seller insist on being paid, based on a fact that he has spent few months negotiating and consulting us. Are we obliged to pay in any event? Thank you.

    • If the seller has a copy of a signed PO it technically can be used a binding contract. If your purchase order indicated that the certificate was part of the suppliers obligation to receive payment you could make the case the supplier did not meet their end of the bargain.

      The reason you want to keep your purchase orders organized with a standardized process is to avoid situations like this. There are times when what you receive or what you are invoiced are not aligned. You can point out the original PO to correct the situation.

  18. My boss Irwin Prescott ask me to research the new policy for purchase orders for sub-consultants, both new and old. He has three very large contract with multiple subs (the client is Florida Department of Transportation). The projects have been going on for years and all the necessary contracts are in place. Is there a change of policy that is coming out first of the year. If I need P.O.s is there a date where that it is necessary and all prior contracts are grandfathered in?

    • I think we need to clarify the situation a little bit further to understand what you’re asking.

      There might be a change of policy but I don’t have enough context to be able to weigh in on that. If there are POs pending then the terms would have been stated in the purchase order if contracts were grandfathered in.

      Ultimately you should treat purchase orders as an agreement between two parties: buyer and seller. If one party is not clear about the details of an order, you are likely to have a dispute.

      The value of procurement officer or purchaser is not just cost savings but clearing up and effectively communicating to vendors what is desired.

  19. Please i need your advice. I own a small company as a supplier. The buyer sent me purchase order with conditions for my company to supply the goods within 5 to 8 weeks and invoice to receive payment with 45 days after the invoice. My company is not the manufacturer of the product. My question is it possible for the manufacturer to accept the PO and supply the goods to be paid after the I receive payment.

    • The short answer is it depends.

      Theoretically I don’t see why a manufacturer would not be able to do this. It just depends on your agreement with the manufacturer. A lot of manufacturers will want a certain percentage up front to cover their risk (likely the minimum would be their cost) but you can negotiate for different terms if you develop a relationship with them.

      Relationships really matter when it comes to procurement.

  20. Hi,
    I have sent a LPO for new ERP software for my company, But due to some financial crises now management wants to drop it, can I able to cancel LPO without any legal problems?

    • Hey Goutham,

      An PO (LPO) usually acts as a legally binding document if both sides have fulfilled their requirements.

      You might have included termination terms but a really important function of procurement and purchasing professionals is to develop relationships with vendors. In this case, you might want to talk with your vendor to see if early termination is possible or perhaps you can negotiate a compromise so both parties are happy with the result.

      Example:
      Gym memberships usually have termination clauses. If a gym goer were to leave the country (or even the immediate) and can provide proof they are usually able to leave the membership without suffering penalties. Some gyms will charge a penalty for early cancellation. Some gyms will grant exemptions. It all depends on your ability to leverage your hopefully positive relationships.

  21. Can a buyer cancel a purchase order halfway through a project? For example if there are 10 items in a PO and work was done for 4 items. Buyer paid for 4 items but then decided that they do not require the remaining 6 items. Can I as a seller refuse to terminate the PO? The PO is for services not products. Seek your advice. Thank you

    • Nitant

      Thanks for reaching out, Tang.

      Yes, as a seller, you can refuse to terminate the PO, unless there are legal details on the PO that state otherwise. Most Purchase Orders do not have legal provisions printed on them. That is why it makes more sense to use a PO generation software that allows you to customize your PO so you can add legal or any such caveats that state the course of action to be taken in the event that something goes wrong.

  22. Hi, I have a query that I hope someone can help me with. A customer has raised a PO to our parent company, who have a different name to us, and are based in the US. However, our parent company want us to ship the order and raise the invoice to the customer from here (we are in the UK). We don’t think we should be supplying and invoicing against a PO that is not addressed to us. Our parent company think we should because they own us. Can anyone offer any advice, please?

    • Nitant

      Hi Ilse,

      Sorry for the delay in responding to your question. Ideally, the Purchase Order should be addressed to the supplier who will be invoicing the customer. The most prudent course of action here would be to contact your parent company and get them to ask the customer to issue a new Purchase Order that is specifically addressed to you.

      Hope this helps.

  23. Hello need your advise. We accepted a PO from a buyer. Then we produced the product based on specifications on the PO and have it delivered to the buyer but not accepted due to errors in the product we produced. Based on our investigation, the Buyer is culpable for the errors committed in producing the product. Now, please advise how can we resolve the issue, specifically how to let them pay for the products we produced. Thanks

    • Nitant

      Hi Amar,

      Be assured that the buyer is responsible for his failure to accurately articulate their required specifications on the purchase order that was issued to you. Once a Purchase Order — drawn up by the buyer — is accepted by the vendor, it is a legally binding contract between the two of them provided that the order, delivered by the vendor, accurately matches the specifications laid down by the buyer. So if you choose to pursue legal action, the ball would certainly be in your court.

      Having said that, taking legal action against your buyer would also have an opportunity cost — your reputation, as a vendor (or provider of services), could suffer if word gets around. Alternatively, the same could apply to the buyer’s reputation.

      Hope this helps in making your decision.

    • Hey Dimitri,

      Good question. Yes a purchase order can include payment deposits for your order.
      My suggestion would be to break down the price by:

      1) % deposit
      2) Remaining Balance

      Just make sure your % deposit and remaining balance add up the correct total cost and you should be alright.

      Just Remember: Purchase orders are most effective when you they properly communicate acceptable terms and agreements between both the buyer and seller.

      Hope this helps.
      -matt

  24. Should a PO come with a set of T&C’s that work in the interest of the buyer? If so, can you recommend a list of T&C’s that should be included in all POs – nothing too legalese, but something that makes from the viewpoint of the buyer?
    Many thanks.

    • Hey John,

      A PO can come with a set of T&C’s.

      Typical T&C’s include:
      -Ship date
      -Delivery terms
      -Return Policy in case of defects
      -Insurance
      -Cancellation clauses
      -etc

      The terms and conditions are just a way to ensure both parties understand what they’ve agreed is fair. If things don’t go as planned or if a party wants to make a change, there are ways to mitigate risks on both sides.

      Example: Supplier will only start manufacturing if 30% of payment is paid. Full payment needs to be made before shipment.
      If you have established trust, a supplier may be more lenient and grant payment terms more favorable to the buyer. It just depends on your unique situation.

      Treat your purchase orders as a way to ask questions about how each party can be expected to respond given future situations.

      Let me know if we can perhaps write a more indepth article if this didn’t answer your question.

  25. Hello,

    I’m Crystal from North Carolina. I work for a GC. I’m preparing purchase orders for the same vendor about once a week. Do I need the Terms & Conditions page signed for every purchase order created or can I get by with having one T&C page signed?

    Thank you.

    • Hey Crystal,

      If you’re preparing the same purchase orders repeatedly for the same vendor you might want to just issue a blanket purchase order. Blanket purchase orders are useful when you have recurring orders. You can set staggered delivery dates with your supplier, lock in pricing and cut down on your paperwork. Just make sure to communicate your intent with your vendor, a short phone call can alleviate a lot of confusion and help you do less non value added work.

      Hope this clears things up,
      -matt

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