Industry Updates

3-Way Matching (3 Way Correlation)

Written by Ken Kinlock
Published on Friday, 21 June 2013
invoice purchase order receiving reportI learned about the three-way match way before I ever heard about EDI. It was done in a large office that had many, many clerks with big stacks of paper all over their desks. I first heard of EDI when I was in Finance and got put on a team to study what we could do with EDI. You guessed right if you said our first and most important project should be the three-way match.
What is the three-way match (sometimes called three-way correlation)? For an expert accounting definition, I turned to the Accounting Coach for an explanation:

In accounting, the three-way match refers to a procedure used when processing an invoice received from a vendor or supplier. The purpose of the three-way match is to avoid paying incorrect and perhaps fraudulent invoices.

Three-way refers to the three documents involved:

1. Vendor's invoice which was received and will become part of an organization's accounts payable if approved.

2. Purchase order that was prepared by the organization.

3. Receiving report that was prepared by the organization.

Match refers to the comparison of the quantities, price per unit, terms, etc. appearing on the vendor's invoice to the information on the purchase order and to the quantities actually received. After the vendor's invoice has been validated by the three-way match, it can be further processed for payment. The three-way match is an important step in safeguarding an organization's assets.

Well, implementing the three-way match was never easy. It is not an EDI Standards problem. It is not a technical problem. As a matter of fact, it is now much easier because the shipping notice (ASN) was invented. It all boils down to communications.

I searched for somebody that could make the process easier. That somebody is RVCF, the Retail Value Chain Federation. I went right to their Retail Collaboration Solutions and here is what I found:

Retailer Collaboration Groups:
As part of the enhanced offerings RVCF's website has to offer, you can now set up your own retail portal within their site. By setting up a Retailer Collaboration Group, you can communicate with your supplier base securely and with ease. Post your trading partner requirements, send notifications in real-time, and much more.

Factory Communications Service:
Bring your factory base into the loop without the extra hoops to jump through. With the Factory Communications service, you can communicate with your factory base securely and with ease. Post your requirements, send notifications in real-time, and much more.

Supplier Communication Programs:
Take advantage of RVCF's expertise in developing and executing events designed to educate your supplier base. Whether you're interested in training, communicating new initiatives, or onboarding suppliers, RVCF specializes in retail event programming and will handle all of the event logistics so you can focus on the essentials.

Supplier Data Integrity Program:
Keeping track of your contact information for your supplier base can be a hassle. With many retailers experiencing that the contacts are scattered amongst the various departments in their organizations, it can be difficult to determine if information is really reaching the right parties. RVCF's Supplier Data Integrity Program can help you obtain the right contacts and keep them up-to-date.


# Ken Kinlock 2013-07-02 13:34
Received via LinkedIN

3-Way Matching (3 Way Correlation)

I worked on a project back in the 90s on an AS-400 for an ERP application that would automatically register the invoices from an EDI file, use the invoices as the basis for performing the receipt, and then automatically match the invoices to the receipts and the purchase orders. This saved the Finance folks a huge amount of work. Automating the registration alone saved one FTE. The trick was linking the receipts to the invoices and the easiest way to do that was to book the receipts from the invoices rather than the shipping documents. This was possible because the shipments were international and therefore it was required by law to have the invoices accompany the shipments. If you don't book the receipts based on the invoices then figuring out which invoices belong with which receipts becomes much more complicated. It also helps if you have a 2-stage receipt process where you receipt to a holding / temporary location and then perform the final putaway to the storage location.
By Curtis Helm

You have no rights to post comments

Industry Updates

eC-BP brings you the most useful and current information on optimizing your supply chain efforts. Whether your concentration is on EDI, logistics, manufacturing, retailing or any other segment of the supply chain, eC-BP brings you the best and most current information in our Industry Updates section.

Supply Chain Buzz




Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.