When a buyer asks for a quotation the seller should always provide a pro_forma invoice. A pro_forma invoice is an invoice sent in advance of the commercial invoice, which is the final bill that the buyer agrees to pay. Some of the advantages of pro_forma invoice to the importer include to show to his government for foreign currency allocation, opening letters of credit and most importantly, to have a detailed information on the transaction that can help him plan. An accurate and professionally submitted pro forma_invoice can help buyers to make a decision and agree to the quotation.
Another outcome is an increase in efficiency; the AP department can instantly find an invoice without having to waste time chasing the business users. With approximately 70% of the invoices now matching the PO immediately, a considerable amount of invoices only require scanning, after which the process is entirely automated. This efficiency has directly resulted in a reduction in the number of people required in the Accounts Payable department; before the system was installed the team consisted of 13 people and there have been reductions in headcount, as the AP manager substantiates: "The IMS system has increased efficiency in our Accounts Payable department to such an extent that on full implementation we expect to reduce our headcount by 4."
How you present your bills for payment to your clients may not seem as important as, for instance, the quality of your services or the products offered _ but actually it is. Are you still using the traditional invoicing? Your clients won't be too enthusiastic when forced to put aside a good portion of their valuable time in order to sort through your paper invoices, file them and maintain payment timelines. You, on the other hand, will have to put up with the hassle of managing all that paper: can you really afford to lose so much of your time on paperwork, when it's better spent working on other aspects of your business?