There are basically two methods of setting up a purchase order number system: Use pre-printed purchase order forms with sequential numbers. Or, use your basic bookkeeping software to print out purchase orders with your company purchase order number system. Purchase order numbers are extremely important and should be tied to original sales order numbers to maintain good order track records. A purchase order number system serves another purpose as a reference to your clients and vendors of any order shipment and it acts as a secondary order track to bookkeeping systems that receive your purchase orders. Here's how to come up with a numbering system for your purchase orders.
For practical purposes in a business where numbered sales order forms are regularly used, it's easy to incorporate the sales order number as part of the purchase order track number. Simply add a digit number that indicates it's now a purchase order. As an example: If the sales order number is 1044, use a mathematics number that consistently indicates it's a purchase order, such as the number 2. The "1" would indicate it began as a sales order, the first step in the sales process. The number "2" indicates it's now Purchase Order No. 21044, the second step in the tracking process. This will only work if purchase orders are not preprinted with a number system and can be added when printing from bookkeeping software.
The best and most accurate systems for all business transactions are those that utilize consistent number tracking. In some companies, each customer is given an account number or special customer ID number. If purchasing in-house supplies from vendors, each vendor can also have an account number that helps create a purchase order number system. If purchases are made from a secondary vendor for a client, tie the client's purchase order number to all future bookkeeping transactions. For example, you, the vendor, purchase a widget for a client from another vendor. Your purchase order to your outside vendor has your company purchase order track number that will be used when the widget is shipped to you or to your client, whichever happens to be the case. All shipping documentation relies on your company purchase order number for identification. This method of ordering tracking is crucial when shipping internationally. Start your company purchase order number system with a relevant and easily identifiable number code. Many companies identify their clients with a customer code of numbers. This code may include a salesman's number, date of order and sequential number of the purchases.