Purchase Order Number

  • By ProcureDesk
  • April 26,2023
  • 10 min read

Purchase Order Number

Have you ever experienced placing an order for your goods and services? Did you wonder why the vendor asked you for a purchase order number? It’s part of the business order process!

This resource will explore what a purchase order number is, why it’s important, and how you can create one. Get ready to dive in and learn about purchase order numbers and how it is a unique identifier that allows companies to track and manage company orders more effectively!

What Is A Purchase Order Number?

A purchase order (PO) number is a unique identifier assigned to a purchase order document. This is used by businesses and vendors to track orders effectively. This ensures that all parties involved in a purchase are aware of the details of the transaction.

A purchase order is a legal document between a buyer and seller confirming an order’s details. It outlines the goods or services purchased, including quantity, price, shipping information, and payment terms. The purchase order typically acknowledges an agreement between two parties to buy and sell goods or services. Furthermore, it acts as a binding contract that requires the vendor to deliver goods or services following specified terms.

PO numbers also help your company ensure that your payments are made on time and that accounting errors don’t occur due to duplicate payments or incorrect billing addresses. You can find the purchase order number, packing slips, sales invoice, and shipping forms on the form. The purchasing department of a company or organization usually generates this. Aside from that, it can also be created using accounting software or templates for those who prefer an electronic purchase process.

Overall, a purchase order number is important to keep track of business transactions. Using this unique identifier, your company can assure your purchases are secure and accounted for.


Why Is A Purchase Order Number Important To your Company?

A purchase order number in your PO is critical to your business. Here are some of the reasons why this unique identifier is important:

1. It prevents any discrepancies between orders, invoices, and payments.

2. It helps businesses maintain accurate records of purchases and reduce any potential financial risks associated with delays or incorrect payments.

3. It allows companies to track inventory levels, shipments, and deliveries easily

Overall, purchase order numbers in your PO can ensure your business processes are streamlined and organized better.

What Is The Process Of Creating A Purchase Order Number?

Creating a purchase order number is a critical step in the purchasing process for any business. This helps your company ensure that all your purchases are tracked and accounted for. It also provides your company with a legal document to back up any transaction.

When creating a purchase order number, it is important that you consider the entire purchase process from start to finish. This includes your payment terms, billing address, and payment deadline. Aside from that, you also need to include the shipping address, item numbers, and other details related to the purchase.

Once all this information is collected, you must write it in a formal manner as a purchase order or a PO.

After your PO form has been completed, your business can use your own accounting software or purchasing department to generate a unique PO number which you can use on invoices and other documents related to the purchase. This number allows your business to track and manage your expenses while ensuring accurate cash flow records.


What Is The Correct Way Of Creating A Purchase Order Number?

The format of a purchase order number can vary depending on the specific business standards and legal requirements of the company. However, in general, a purchase order number consists of a combination of letters and numbers that uniquely identifies the document. A common format for purchase order numbers is YYYY-MM-DD- followed by a unique number or code, which typically indicates the order in which the purchase orders were created.

The YYYY-MM-DD format represents the year, month, and day on which the purchase order was created. This helps to organize and track the purchase orders by date, making it easier to search and retrieve specific orders when needed. The unique number or code that follows the date helps to ensure that each purchase order number is unique and avoids any duplicate payments or accounting errors.

It’s important to note that while there may be certain patterns or formats that are commonly used for purchase order numbers, the specific format used by a company may vary. It’s essential for businesses to establish clear guidelines and standards for purchase order numbers to ensure consistency and accuracy in their financial records.

What Is The Process Of Creating A PO Number System?

Understanding how to create a PO number system is important to help you streamline your purchasing process. Aside from that, this will also help you protect your bottom line.

A PO number system will help your company track orders, maintain accurate records, and reduce any financial risk associated with wrong payments or delays. Here are some of the important steps you need to remember to help you create a successful PO number system:

1. Include important information: Design a purchase order form with essential information, such as billing address, purchase order process, cash flow, and a binding document.

2.Include a unique PO number: Allocate a unique PO number to each purchase order for easy tracking and future reference.

3.Confirm transaction and send PO order: Send the PO document to the vendor to confirm the transaction.

4.Don’t forget to track: Record the purchase requisition in your accounting software or other business expense tracking systems for accounting purposes and future reference.

5. Add your PO number to your system: Add the PO number to generate packing slips and sales invoices for payment processing.

6. Attach your PO to shipping forms: For electronic purchases, attach the entire purchase order to shipping forms or emails sent to vendors with a payment deadline to prevent accounting errors or duplicate payments.

7. Assign separate PO for easy tracking: If using blanket purchases, assign separate PO numbers for easy tracking and include shipping addresses and itemized item lists when needed.


How To List A Purchase Order On An Invoice?

When it comes to invoicing, it’s important that your purchase number is clear and visible to ensure it is easily readable and identifiable. This is something you must always stress out to your suppliers.

Here are some of the things you must remind your suppliers in terms of them listing your purchase number on your invoice:

1. Numbers must be listed on both the top and bottom of the invoice to ensure it is easy to find it.

2. Include a line item dedicated to the purchase order number. Remember that an invoice that does not have a PO number might cause confusion and delays in payment.

3. All information associated with the PO (delivery date, shipping address, etc) must be accurate before submitting. This will help streamline any questions or issues that may come up along the way.

Overall, a PO number is a crucial component in any invoice. By having it on your documents, you can guarantee your invoice process to run smoothly!

Purchase Order Vs. Invoice Number

Purchase orders and invoice numbers are both crucial documents for any business. A purchase order (PO) is a binding contract issued by a buyer to a seller, outlining the terms and conditions of the transaction, including cost, delivery dates, and payment terms. PO numbers are used to track and identify transactions throughout their lifecycle.

On the other hand, an invoice is a detailed statement of goods or services provided to a customer, including the amount due for payment, taxes, and fees. The invoice number serves as an identifier for the transaction, helping businesses maintain accurate records of their customer’s purchases.

While purchase orders and invoices serve different purposes, they both use unique identifiers such as PO numbers and invoice numbers, enabling businesses to track their transactions effectively and meet legal obligations. Proper management of these documents is essential for a business’s cash flow and accounting processes.

In conclusion, purchase orders and invoices are essential components of any business operation and financial audit, providing legal protection and accurate tracking of transactions. Ensuring that each transaction has a unique PO and invoice number is crucial for proper record-keeping.


In conclusion, understanding what a purchase order number is and why it’s important is crucial for any business owner or procurement professional. A purchase order number is a unique identifier that enables companies to track and manage their orders more effectively, ensuring accurate record-keeping and avoiding costly mistakes. By creating a consistent format for purchase order numbers, businesses can maintain proper documentation and streamline their procurement processes. Aside from that, you can guarantee your business gets great financial health!

We hope that this resource has provided you with valuable insights into the world of purchase order numbers, and how they can benefit your business. So, the next time you’re asked for a purchase order number, you’ll know exactly why it matters!

Are you ready to discover invoicing software that will help your finance departments manage your procurement process better? Schedule a call with our team at ProcureDesk today!