How to Choose the Right Type of Purchase Order Software for Your Organization

Jeremy Francis

March 14th, 2019 Procurement Process   purchase order  

Misplaced purchase orders. Improper 3-way matching. Unfulfilled customer orders due to unseen emails. Impossibly complicated procedures to retrieve older, archived POs. Inefficient order processing. A suffering procurement department.

purchase order software

There are so many reasons to use purchase order software. Most organizations get this right, and scour the internet for a good, affordable PO software tool to take care of purchasing-related business.

As important as it is to get PO software, it is crucial that you pick the right PO software. Here’s how to make sure you make the best PO software choice.

The Types of Purchase Order Software Tools

A quick search online will show you that there are a ton of tools out there. You have three kinds of PO tools to pick from.

P2P suites

Short for Procure-to-Pay suites, these are comprehensive all-purpose software tools with modules taking care of all processes under the ‘procurement’ umbrella. Most P2P suites will offer specific modules that take care of core purchasing and procurement functions like POs, purchase requests, and vendor management.

ERP tools

A common feature of most businesses, ERP software usually has a ‘procurement’ module. This is meant to cover all the functions of a dedicated purchasing tool, but the reality is often a less functional module primarily focused on working together with the other parts of the ERP tool.

There are two issues with using the procurement module of the ERP tool you may be using already. One is that you simply don’t get ‘all bases covered’–some niche functions may be missing a dedicated solution. Two, ERP tools simply aren’t as user-friendly as dedicated P2P solutions which offer contextual dashboards, and tools designed for specific procurement-related functions.

Stand-alone apps

You can also choose to use a dedicated purchase order app that caters to a specific function, maybe vendor management or PO approvals. Using dedicated interfaces and approval-based workflows, you can take care of procurement using an app per function.

Automate Purchase Order Process in
15 Minutes with

Used by Pepsi, Motorola, Domino's and 10,000+ Businesses. No coding required.

Features You Should be Looking For In a PO Software

Rule-based computation engine

A tool like KiSSFLOW takes care of things like three-way matching by incorporating logic-based business rules to take decisions and route the payload accordingly.

Three-way matching

As mentioned earlier, the matching of a PO with the invoice and goods receipt is a crucial part of procurement. With a software tool taking care of this function, you boost efficiency and speed, and achieve consistent results in PO processing.

Policy Compliance

Rule-based computation engines like KiSSFLOW’s help you execute POs and other procurement functions in line with organizational spend policies and the legal landscape.

Integrations

Whether you’re using a stand-alone app or a comprehensive P2P solution, you need a tool that works well with other solutions your business may be using. This could be about accessing data from an external source, or triggering an action in response to another software connected through an API.

Flexibility

Every organization has its own way of doing procurement, and this extends to POs. You want a tool that can be tweaked to follow PO execution the way your business does it, and not something that forces you and your team to bend over backward just because its workflows are rigidly built a certain way.

Automate Purchase Order Process in
15 Minutes with

Used by Pepsi, Motorola, Domino's and 10,000+ Businesses. No coding required.

Know Yourself, Before Buying Yourself a PO Solution!

Before getting into PO software-choosing mode, understand how knowing the kind of buyer you are should influence your decision. It’s simple: just answer the following questions.

Are you working in direct procurement?

If you’re in direct procurement, buying raw materials or other goods for production (not for sale), then you can try an ERP solution with a tacked-on procurement module. This is because you’ll need your software to take care of non-procurement functions like vendor-managed inventory.

These systems work when you need to take care of procurement as a part of a larger list. If you’re looking for a procurement-focused tool, read on.

Do you handle both direct as well as indirect purchasing?

In this case, a P2P product is what you need. It gives you the added functionality to cover a broad range of procurement-related functions.

Do you handle purchasing for a department? Are you trying to control expenses in one key area?

For both these motives, a function-specific tool, like KiSSFLOW’s purchase order approval tool, is what you need.

Automate Purchase Order Process in
15 Minutes with

Used by Pepsi, Motorola, Domino's and 10,000+ Businesses. No coding required.

KiSSFLOW and Purchase Orders

KiSSFLOW offers function-focused apps on an easy-to-use interactive platform. Its rule-based computation engine offers functions like auto-routed payloads, auto-assigned responsibilities, and an easier way of executing POs in general.

You can pick from 50+ process-specific apps, or design your own from scratch. It’s got an intuitive and powerful form builder, and easy integration capabilities. Purchase order management is a whole lot easier with KiSSFLOW. But don’t take our word for it–get the free trial today!