In­voice re­ceipt val­ue vs purc­hase order val­ue

In today's blog post I will show the necessary SAP® data and analysis steps to compare the purchase order value with the total invoice receipt amount.

Usually the invoice receipt amount should match the purchase order amount –or at least, those amounts should not differ too much. For example, if one laptop has been ordered with a net value of 1,000.00 €, an invoice with an amount of 1,000.00 € is expected accordingly (if the same article which has been ordered got delivered).

However, there may be reasons for discrepancies: There could be unplanned additional delivery costs which have not been entered when the PO was created, but now are stated on the vendors’ invoice. Another reason may be the simple fact that the invoice has been entered incorrectly when booking the invoice receipt (a typo for example) or the vendor created the invoice wrongly.

In SAP®, tolerance limits on PO line item level can be set up (percentages for example which will be accepted by the system automatically). However, if those limits are exceeded, they sometimes can just be accepted by the users if he is able to override them, or even the “unlimited overdelivery” flag could be in place.

Because of such scenarios it can be very interesting to compare the total invoice receipt value with the original purchase order value, like shown in this blog post.

Pur­chase or­der line items vs. in­voice re­ceipts

Purchase orders in SAP® can be displayed via the transaction "ME23N". It provides all details of the PO items. The tab "Order History" in the item details allows an insight into the corresponding goods receipts and invoice receipts which already have been entered in context of this PO line item. Looking at these values, the total invoice receipt amount can easily be compared with the PO item value for one specific PO by simply using the SAP® transaction ME23n.

However, this only allows to look at the data case by case, PO by PO. It is not a structured approach in terms of data analytics or analyzing “big data”, e.g. checking all purchase orders of the last two fiscal years regarding invoice receipt exceeding’s. To achieve this, you should consider looking at the SAP© tables containing the raw data:

The table "EKPO" contains the purchase order line items, e.g. material number, item text, quantity, price and total value. The table "EKBE" (“Purchase order history”) is interesting as well, as it contains - amongst other information - all invoice receipts which have been posted with reference to a PO. In addition to invoice receipts are several more event types in table EKBE that can happen in context of a purchase order line item. The most common SAP© event types are listed below:

An­a­ly­tic steps for com­par­ing in­voice val­ue vs. PO val­ue:

1. Processing the invoice receipts (table EKBE)

a) Isolating the invoice receipts

As described above, this table contains a variety of different event types. For our task only the invoice receipts are essential. The necessary transactions can be filtered and isolated by putting them in a new table.

b) Applying the Debit /Credit indicator to use the correct amount

In most SAP® financial tables you will find only absolute amounts. Those have to be looked at in context of the associated debit/credit indicator (“S” for Debit, “H” for credit). In order to answer the audit question currently, each invoice receipt amount must be transferred into a positive or negative amount depending on the debit / credit indicator. It should be negative, if the indicator is “H" (Credit), and positive if the indicator is “S” (Debit). As the following example shows, this is important because of credit notes or reversed invoices, which will also be listed in the purchase order history as “Invoice received” event:

In this example, three invoice receipts listed for the purchase order item. Having a closer look we can see, there are two debit ("S") lines and one credit "H" line. This means that two invoices have been entered, but one invoice was cancelled (or a credit note was entered). This means, only a total invoice receipt amount of 600 € is relevant (600-600+600).

c) Summarizing all invoice receipts

The possibility of multiple invoice receipts (or credit notes / cancellations) can be taken into account by summarizing the data on PO line item level, using the purchase order number and item number plus cumulating the positive and negative amounts as explained above allows us to identify the total (cumulated) invoice receipt amount for each PO line item.


2. Combining purchase order items (EKPO) versus summarized invoice receipts (EKBE)

The purchase order items and the summed up invoice receipts can now be combined by using purchase order number and line item number. Once you have the purchase order and invoice receipt values next to each other, the difference between the net order value and the total invoice receipt value can be calculated. The following figure shows an example of the result:

In the same way you could include the goods receipts values to compare all three process steps in one single table.


A very quick but important analysis to identify too high invoice receipts from vendors. The main trick is to consider the fact of multiple invoice receipts (including credit notes or reversed invoices, which have to be deducted). A final tip - not only for this analysis - keep the currency of the amounts in mind, and be careful not to compare values of different currencies without adjusting them first.

Best Regards
Florian Popan

P.S. For any comments or questions, feel free to write us at info@dab-gmbh.de.

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