Electronic invoices contain all of the information required in a traditional, paper invoice in an encrypted format, including data on the sender and recipient, such as their name and Tax ID number, the date of the invoice, the sender's legal address, the amount of the invoice and the percentage and amount of VAT, among other information. Furthermore, the document includes an electronic signature, which is generated using a digital certificate that has been provided to the sender of the invoice by a Tax Agency_approved certificate company. This combination of factors provides a Electronic Invoice with sufficient reliability so as to indisputably guarantee its integrity and the authenticity of its origin.
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."