Managing Purchase Orders with EZOfficeInventory

Procurement and Vendor Management

How will Purchase Orders help my business?

You can use EZOfficeInventory to create and keep track of Purchase Orders, helping you easily define the types, quantities, and agreed prices for items you need. The Procurement Module ensures that orders are processed quickly by creating linkages between items and vendors.

Moreover, now enjoy greater control over your dealings with suppliers, print invoices to send on to vendors or keep for yourself, and watch items be updated as soon as they’re read as received on the system, without the need for any action on your side!

1. Enabling Purchase Orders
2. Creating a Purchase Order
2.1. Adding custom fields
2.2. Adding mass items
2.3. Applying taxes
2.4. Specifying destination location per Line Item
3. Access by User-type
4. Approver and Approved By
5. Receiving Items Against a Purchase Order
6. Purchase Orders and Stock Quantities
7. Purchase Order States
8. Deleting a Purchase Order
9. Communicating with Vendors
10. Documentation and Reports
11. Alerts

1. Enabling Purchase Orders

If you’re on the advanced features plan or above, you can enable this module by going to Settings –> Add Ons –> Purchase Orders –> Enable. Once this is done, you’ll be able to find the Purchase Orders page under More –> Purchase Orders:

Asset tracking software - Purchase Orders

Please note that Staff Users can access Purchase Orders from the Notification bell –> Purchase Orders.

2. Creating a Purchase Order

To add a new PO, click on the ‘Add Purchase Order’ button in the right-side menu of the page. This opens up an overlay prompting you to choose a vendor to create a Purchase Order against.

Once this is done, you’ll be taken to the Purchase Order Details Page where you can fill in all details such as Payment and Shipment Terms (for added details for your vendor), the Delivery Location (referring to the location the received items will be added to), and Description (which will appear on the PO invoice).

2.1. Adding custom fields

You can also add custom fields for PO from More –> Custom Fields.

purchase order in asset tracking software

You can then add items to your PO, adjusting the quantity and price based on your agreement with your vendor.

2.2. Adding multiple items

Mass items can also be added to the Purchase Order. You can edit the quantity and the per unit price and the system automatically calculates the Line Total for the item. The system also accounts for any custom entries you might have made (shown below as ‘pre-payment’):

PO line items table

You can also add items that don’t already exist in the product catalog directly from this page, which will automatically create a new item when the order is received.

As with all listing pages in EZOfficeInventory, the three vertical ellipsis at the top-right can be clicked to customize columns for this page.

2.3. Applying Taxes

Multiple custom tax rates can be applied by default to every purchase order. Go to Settings → Company Settings → Tax Details for Purchase Orders → Edit/Create New Tax → Click ‘Apply to every Purchase Order by default’.

create custom tax

You can also change a PO tax rate from the Order Line Items section. See image below:

editable custom rate

Customizability is so important to us! This is why you can include custom entries in tax calculations from within the PO Details Page. You can select it under the Tax details in Company Settings.

2.4. Specifying destination location per Line Item

A Purchase Order might correspond to items that are ordered for different locations. In this scenario, employees have to manually log the location against each Inventory item once the shipment is received, making the process of data-keeping and inventory tracking tedious.

For this reason, the PO module in EZOfficeInventory enables you to set the Inventory destination in advance. Specify a Delivery Location for each of your Line Items from the get-go, right when you’re drafting your Purchase Order.

Purchase order - Different location per line item

Hit ‘Confirm Order’ button from the right once you are done drafting the Purchase Order. No more items can be added to this PO now. You can now receive items against this PO.

3. Access by User-type


You must be an Administrator to experience full access to the PO module. An admin can always edit the Purchase Order to account for whoever requested a certain order. They can add new items to a PO that do not exist in the product catalog by clicking the ‘+Add Items not in product catalog’ link below the ‘Add Items’ field

Admins not only can just edit or approve/deny but also send PO requests for approvals from other admins. In other situations, an admin can approve a PO request made by him/her as well.

Admins can also add multiple items to a Purchase Order using the mass action button on the Items page, speeding up processing times. They can add these to an existing drafted PO, or create a new one right there.

Staff Users

Staff users can add new items to a PO that do not exist in your product catalog by clicking the ‘+Add Items not in product catalog’ link below the ‘Add Items’ field. New items from within the PO Details Page can be added when a PO is in a drafted or pending state.

To allow Staff Users to access the PO module, enable the option to ‘Allow staff users to create purchase order requests for Administrators to review and replenish stock’ in Settings –> Add Ons –> Purchase Orders. Learn more about how Staff Users can make Stock Requests.

Staff Users can request Inventory Stock via Purchase Orders. purchase order requested by

Learn more: How can staff users request inventory stock in EZOfficeInventory

4. Approver and Approved By

EZOfficeInventory enables its users with enhanced requisition submission and response by adding flexibility around who makes requests and who approves them. This plays out well when you want to hold your employees accountable for their actions and keep track of inventory control. 

An admin and staff user can set ‘Approver’ to a Purchase Order (drafted or pending) by clicking the edit icon against the ‘Approver’ field in the PO details page. See image below:approver

Once a PO has been confirmed or approved by an admin, you can no longer edit this field.

The field for ‘Approved By’ has 2 different scenarios mentioned below:

  • Scenario One: If a PO has an Approver set, but it is approved by a different admin, then ‘Approved by’ field below the ‘Approver’ field will show the name of the admin who approved the PO request. Hover on the name against the ‘Approved By’ field and it will show you the selected Approver’s name. See the image below.
  • Scenario Two: If a PO has no approver set, then an admin approving the request is automatically set as the Approver in the PO details page.approved by

For the above to work out, a user who created the PO has to click the ‘Make Request’ button. Based on the above scenarios, an admin approving the PO must click the ‘Approve Request’ button to finalize the PO approval. Once done, the ‘Approved By’ field shows up in the PO details page in place of ‘Approver’ field (see image above).

Request Approved Alert: An email alert is generated and sent to the Approver when a PO is confirmed or approved with the condition that ‘Request Approved’ alert is enabled in the PO Requester and Approver accounts. Otherwise, the approver and the admin who has approved the PO, will both receive this email separately. In other cases, if no approver is set, all the admins will receive the ‘Request Approved’ alert.

Request and Approval Activity Log and History: A step-by-step activity log is recorded of a Purchase Order including actions taken on it including who created it, approved it, denied it, etc. You can see the activities at the bottom of the PO details page, under the ‘History’ tab.activity log

Similarly, you can also keep track of all actions taken on a PO from the History button. Click ‘Purchase Order History’.PO history

Please note that Staff Users can access Purchase Orders from the Notification bell –> Purchase Orders.

5. Receiving Items Against a Purchase Order

Any time an item is received against a Purchase Order, the system will automatically update the product catalog as well as any details like cost price, location, etc. For this to work out, hit ‘Receive Items’ button from the right on the Purchase Order page.

For example, if you made a purchase order for 10x Chairs, 1x Camera, and 1x Laptop and received a part of the order, say you haven’t received 5 chairs out of 10 chairs. See image below:

Receive PO items

Uncheck ‘Update product catalog with items received’ if you do not want the system to be updated automatically. The image below shows how the pricing table will be shown after you receive the items.Received Items - Pricing Table

6. Purchase Orders and Stock Quantities

The system not only updates the list of assets received against a Purchase Order, but also helps you manage asset stock and inventory quantities. On a stock item’s detail page, you’ll find a section entitled ‘Stock Orders’:

Stock Orders for Asset Tracking SoftwareWhen an order of 10 chairs is received, for example, the ‘Stock Orders’ section will update to reflect the quantity ordered. If 5 of these items are received against the PO, the ‘Quantity by Location’ section will show 5 additional chairs, and the ‘Pending Stock’ will show 5 remaining stock. However, the ‘Quantity Ordered’ will remain 10 until the entire order has been received.

7. Purchase Order States

A purchase order can move through many states depending on whether an order has been confirmed, payments made, and the items that have been received against it. You can view all purchase orders, their approval pending and denied updates from More –> Purchase Orders or Notifications bell –> Purchase Orders.po status page

Below, you’ll find a list of all possible states a Purchase Order can pass through.

Purchase Order Status

To clarify, here’s what the different PO states mean:

  • Drafted: The PO has been drafted. You can clone, delete and void the PO at this stage, as well as add items or edit any details you’d like.
  • Confirmed Items Pending: This means that the PO is confirmed, but the items ordered are yet to be received. You will not be able to add items to it or edit the price of items, but you can still update delivery dates and custom fields. Note that if both the payment and items are pending in an order, the system will only reflect the ‘Confirmed Items Pending’ status.
  • Confirmed Payment Pending: The items ordered through the PO have been received, but the payment has not been made yet. This could mean that either a partial payment is pending or the entire sum.
  • Completed: All activities relating the PO have been successfully concluded, with the items received and the payment made in full.
  • Void: Although a PO can be cloned at any stage, it can only be voided when it is in the Drafted or Completed state. This will remove all references to the PO from the system, including reports. Please note that if items were created through a PO, they must be first deleted or retired before the PO can be made void.

8. Deleting a Purchase Order

You can delete a Purchase Order considering it is in a drafted or void state. To do this, go to More –> Purchase Orders –> Click a Purchase Order (Drafted/Void). From the Purchase Order details page, hit the ‘delete’ button.

deleting a PO

If it’s a drafted PO, you can clone, delete and void the PO at this stage, as well as add items or edit any details you’d like.

For scenarios where you want to delete a completed PO, you’ll first have to mark it void. As mentioned above, a PO can only be voided when it is in the Drafted or Completed state.

Please note that deleting or voiding a PO will remove all references to the PO from the system, including reports. Items that were created through a PO must be first deleted or retired before the PO can be made void, and then deleted.

You cannot delete multiple Purchase Orders in a single go.

9. Communicating with Vendors

You can send emails to vendors at any stage of a Purchase Order. This can include all relevant correspondence such as quotations or pricing negotiations. Clicking ‘Send Email’ will open an email textbox pre-populated with the vendor’s email address.

You can also add admins to the correspondence in the top section, as well as CC any other individuals you’d like to send the email to:

Asset Tracking Software

You can add a PDF link to the Purchase Order directly from this overlay (as shown above).

10. Documentation and Reports

Clicking on ‘Print Invoice’ will download a PDF of the Purchase Order documentation that you can then send on to vendors or to people from the accounting department. For more information, you can click on the ‘History’ button on the right for a history trail of actions and information relating to the Purchase Order:

Purchase Order History

Under Reports > Purchase Order Line Items report, you can get a summary of PO actions, which can be filtered according to your preferences:

Purchase Order Report

These reports can also be exported as either a PDF or CSV.

11. Alerts

Alerts help you stay on top of your purchase orders and get notified of actions performed on POs. Enable PO alerts from Alerts under ‘Purchase Orders’.po alerts inventory control software

You can also stay on top of all your purchase orders from Notification Bell -> Purchase Orders.bell to purchase order page

You can use different email addresses for sending out alerts on Purchase Orders using SPF Settings. These email addresses can be applied to both the ‘From’ and ‘Reply To’ addresses.

Go to Settings → Add Ons → System Generated Emails → Click the Edit action. Here, you can define whether you want to use an admin email address, a custom email address, or the email address of a prompter (the user who triggered an action on a purchase order).

purchase order spf settings

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Updated: This post was updated to reflect changes in adding tax rates for purchase orders, giving staff users the ability to request inventory stock via POs, and sending out PO alerts using different email addresses configured in SPF settings.