Archive for November, 2009

Advanced Payment business flow automated

November 2, 2009 2 comments

Openbravo has just released Advanced Payments Pack. This pack supports the management of advanced payments among a number of business partners. It facilitates the practice among trading partners where the seller organization collects an advanced payment at the beginning of a period, provides goods or services during the period, and at the end of the period invoices the buyer for the difference between the advanced payment and the value of the goods and services actually provided.

The module supports the advanced payment flow in generic terms, however, it is designed to  support advanced payments among subsidiaries of the same business group. The case where the holding company collects the advanced payments from a number of subsidiaries is emphasized, but the functionality is not restricted to this scenario.

The feature implemented by this module is already available in Openbravo ERP but requires  manual operations. The pack enables tasks automation, so they are performed in a faster, more efficient and more reliable way.

The Mass Advanced Payment pack is composed of three modules that could be installed and used independently:

  • Mass Advanced Payment: Provides a tool to create bulk advance payments for a number of business partners with a single action.
  • Direct Debit Form of Payment: Provides a new form of payment where the selling organization directly charges the amount of the payment to a bank account of the business partner associated with the payment.
  • Business Partner Debt Consolidation: Provides a tool to automatically consolidate the outstanding payments for a number of business partners and creates a debt payment for the difference of payment dues and payment received closing all intermediary documents.

This pack has been developed to work together with two other modules, which are not included in the pack, but are highly recommended to automate other business processes related to this business flow:

  • Mass Invoicing: Makes possible to generate multiple invoices based on an invoice template. Check out blog…
  • Inter-company Documents: Automates the creation of inter-company documents. An inter-company document is an invoice or order created within subsidiaries of one same business group. Whenever an inter-company document is completed, the corresponding document is created in the target organization matching the original document. Check out blog..

What’s new?

After installing this pack some new items appear in the menu:

  • Financial Management || Receivables and Payables || Transactions:
    • Mass Advanced Payment: Three step wizard. In the first the target values are selected: business partner, payment template, bank account, amount, etc. In the second step, modifications per business partner can be done. If the data is confirmed and the process button pressed, the advanced payments are created. The last step displayed the information of the just generated payments.
    • Direct Debit Create: Pop-up where filter values can be inserted. The corresponding debt payments with form of payment set to direct debit will be processed.
    • BP Debt Consolidation: Form to enter values to filter the payments to consolidate. The target payments form of payment, bank account and due date can be defined. Once the process button is pressed, the result will be displayed in the same window.
  • Financial Management || Receivables and Payables || Setup:
    • Payment Template: Window where payment templates can be defined. This templates will be used in the mass advanced payment wizard. The templates will define a default bank account, form of payment, payment status, etc. There is a flag in the template to set whether inter-company payments should be created or not.

Business Flow

The general business flow can be described as following:

  1. An organization receives multiple advanced payments from a number of business partners. This is registered in the application using Mass Advanced Payment functionality. First of all, there must be a payment template created. This template will have the receipt flag checked. It is recommended to select Direct Debit form of payment. Second, the wizard will be run, selecting the appropriate business partners, amounts, due date, etc.
  2. Transfer the payments to the bank account If direct debit form of payment was selected in the template for the advance payments, this process can be done using Direct Debit Create process.
  3. Goods and services are sold creating sales invoices. During certain period, sales invoices are created to the different business partners. Mass Invoicing process could be a useful tool to automate this process.
  4. Debt Consolidation Finally, the invoices created are consolidated against the advanced payment. A single payment is created to adjust the difference. The payment can be negative or positive depending on whether the amount collected as advanced payment exceeds or not the value of the sales invoices created during the period.

The special case of advanced payments between organizations in the same business group is also supported by this module. In this scenario, an organization receives advanced payments from a subsidiary organization. As for this, it is necessary that each organization is mapped to a business partner. This can be done in General Setup || Enterprise || Organization, in the organization information tab. Also, the payment template must have the inter-company flag activated. This way, the mass advanced payments wizard will detect which business partners represent organizations and will create a matching payments in those organizations.

If inter-company approach is used, the use of inter-company documents module is recommended. This way, matching documents will be created automatically in the subsidiary organizations if an invoice/order addressed to them is completed.

Check out the user manuals for more information:Mass Advanced Payments, Direct Debit and Business Partner Debt Consolidation.

Technical Overview

Mass Advanced Payments: The template window is a regular WAD generated window. The mass advanced wizard is on the other hand manual code. A java servlet controls the navigation between the different windows though session variables. The information is retrieved from the database using Data Access Layer. The drop down fields, the combos, are reloaded using Ajax.

Direct Debit form of payment: Direct debit create process has been developed with a database PL procedure. This procedure and its parameters are registered in the application dictionary. This way, WAD can generate the filter window the user gets when the process is executed.

Business Partner Debt Consolidation: This process has been developed with a manual window that uses Data Access Layer to retrieve database information.

Advanced Payments module is already available in the forge and in the central repository, so please feel free to install it and make the best of it! We are looking forward for your feedback, so every comment on the module will be more than welcome!

Categories: Openbravo