Create a purchase order

In order to create a purchase order, you must be in a location that has purchasing functionality enabled. If you cannot see the purchasing menu, ask your administrator to enable purchasing in your location.

For depots or offices that place purchase orders to multiple locations (for example, a headquarters office that purchases stock for delivery to all it’s subsidiaries), a “central purchasing” setting can be enabled to allow the user to see and create POs destined for multiple locations. The instructions below note how the process is different for central purchasing locations.


In a given location, managers, administrators, and superusers all have the ability to create purchase orders. However, only users with PO approver permission can place or edit purchase orders. If you can’t perform the steps listed below, or you can’t see pricing information in the POs, have your administrator check your permissions.

Create a PO

Go to purchasing > create purchase order

This will bring you to the PO header page:

Fill out the fields using the below instructions

  1. Order number: leave blank to generate automatically
  2. Description (required): Enter a short description of the order
  3. Origin(required): Select the supplier from the drop down menu. If the vendor is not available, your administrator can add a supplier location using these instructions.
  4. Destination (required): In a regular purchasing location, your destination will be set to the depot you are currently in. If you want to send the goods to another location, go to that depot before creating the PO. In central purchasing locations, you will be able to select any destination that can receive stock.
  5. Purchasing organization (required): This is the office that is issuing the purchase order - the office that will pay the bill. It will be automatically set to the umbrella organization of the location where you create the purchase order.
  6. Ordered by (required): This will autofill to your name. You can update it if needed.
  7. Ordered on (required): This will autofill to the PO creation date. You can update it if needed.
  8. Payment Method: Select a payment method from the dropdown. Your administrator can add new payment methods using these instructions.
  9. Payment terms: Select a payment term from the dropdown. Your administrator can add new payment methods using these instructions.
  10. Currency: The currency will autofill to the default currency set for the system. Select from the dropdown to change to another currency. If the currency you need is not available, your administrator can add it using these instructions

Pressing next will create the purchase order

Add items to a purchase order

The next page allows you to add items and non-item lines to a PO. This section will focus on item lines - skip to the section on order adjustments for non-item lines.

To add an item to a PO, fill out each of the fields on the edit line items tab, and press save to add the item. See below detailed instructions for each field:

  1. Product (required): use the product search to find and select a product to add to the purchase order. You can search by code or name
  2. Source code: Once you have selected a product, you will be able to select a source code. The source code represents a particular combination of supplier code, manufacturer, and manufacturer code. If you have previously ordered this item, or entered quotation information, the source code dropdown will show all previous vendor/manufacturer number combos for this product and location. You can select on of the preexisting sources to autofill the other fields. If you don't select a source code, the supplier code, manufacturer, and manufacturer codes will stay blank. If you want to add a code combination that doesn’t already exist, you can click "create new" in the dropdown and enter the information into the modal. On save, a source will be created and the information you entered will be added to the PO.

3. Quantity (required): Enter the quantity ordered into this field. Remember this is the quantity per unit of measure, which is the next field. If you put "each" in unit of measure, then it is the number of eaches. If you put "Box/20", it is the number of boxes of 20

4. Unit of Measure (required): The unit of measure is actually two fields - a package and a number of items per package. For package, you can select from a set list - box, case, bottle, blister, pack - then you put the number of units per pack. For example, for a box of 20, select "Box", and then write 20 in the field to the right. If you select "each" it will autofill 1 as the units per pack.

5. Cost (required): Enter the cost per unit of measure. For example, if your unit of measure is box of 20, the cost entered should be the cost per box of 20

6. Total cost: This will auto calculate as quantity * unit cost

7. Recipient: If there is a particular person or department that will be receiving this item, select their name from the drop down.

8. Estimated Ready Date: Enter the date that the items are expected to be ready to ship. This can be left blank

9. Budget code (required if visible): This will only appear if your administrator has enabled budget coding. If it appears, it is required to fill it in, Select the budget code that this line item will be charged to.

For each PO line, press save to add the completed line to the PO. You can then move onto the next line

Add non-item charges to a purchase order

If you have to add non-item charges to a PO, like shipping, fees, or taxes, click on the second tab, called "order adjustments":

Fill out the fields visible in this tab according to the below instructions, then press save. Please note that there is no import for order adjustments at this time, so any non-item lines will need to be entered one by one.

  1. Type (required): Select the type of order adjustment from the drop down. If you don't see a type that matches your needs, ask your administrator to add it
  2. Order Item: If the adjustment is associated with an order item (lets say a discount on a particular item), you can select the item from the dropdown menu. Leave blank if the charge is not associated with a specific item
  3. Description (required): describe the charge
  4. Percentage/amount (one required): You can either fill out an amount for the charge, or a percentage. If you fill out amount, then that amount will be added to the PO. If you fill out a percentage, OpenBoxes will calculate the amount to add to the order based on the percentage you entered
  5. Comments: enter any additional comments if required
  6. Budget code (required if visible): This will only appear if your administrator has enabled budget coding. If it appears, it is required to fill it in. Select the budget code that this line item will be charged to.

For each order adjustment, press save to add the completed line to the PO.

Edit PO lines before placing an order

If you need to edit an order item or an order adjustment after adding it, you can do so by pressing edit under the actions menu:

This will bring up a modal with all of the information for that PO line.

You can change any information in this modal except the product. If you need to change the product, you can delete the line using the delete button in the drop down menu. You can then add a new line with the correct product.

Place and print the order

Once your PO is ready, press "Place Order" to finalize the purchase. Please note that only users with approver permissions are allowed to submit orders - this prevents users who do not have financial authorization from making orders. Approver permissions can be added or removed by you system administrator

After placing the order, you will be allowed to print the PO. Pressing the print order button will generate a PDF of the order that can be saved and sent to the vendor. POs cannot be printed until after the order is placed to prevent orders being sent without proper approvals.

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