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Purchase orders – what we’re up to

We did a small update today, but since there were no big headline features, I thought I’d give an update on where we’re at with the much requested purchase order functionality. It’s been keeping a large part of our core team busy for the last few months. We haven’t often pre-announced features like this before, so keen to know whether you find this useful.

Purchase Orders is a large chunk of functionality and while developing them we also took the time to improve a number of big items behind the scenes we haven’t touched for a while. These libraries will be used in other new features we have coming up and you’ll see the benefits later in the year. From time to time we have to do these projects. However we’ve made good progress and I thought I’d give you a walkthrough of what to expect when we do release (we’re aiming for late September/October at this stage).

So what can you expect?

Enhanced dashboard and list screens

From the purchase dashboard you will be able to view a summary of all your purchase orders and create new ones. Like bills, you can click through to view individual POs and perform bulk actions like approving, printing, emailing and deleting.

Purchase orders list view

Building a purchase order

Building a purchase order is very similar to creating an invoice. You select a supplier and enter the lines of the order. You get all the same invoice features like multi-currency, access to inventory items and choosing a branding theme (see below). You also get to specify a delivery address and instructions. This address could be your organisation’s physical or postal address, a previous delivery address or even a one-off address specific to this order.


Purchase orders delivery

Branding a purchase order

Out of the box a purchase order, when printed to PDF, will inherit your default standard theme and logo. However, like invoices, you can create a specific theme just for purchase orders. If you choose to create a DOCX theme you can go to town to customise exactly how you want your purchase orders to appear to your suppliers.

Creating bills from purchase orders

You can easily create a bill from an existing purchase order. Doing so will copy the contents of the purchase order into a new bill.

You are then free to edit the details to match exactly what is being billed but, through history and notes, you’ll be able to trace back to the underlying order.

We’ve actually built a generic “Copy-to” function that allows you to copy a purchase order to not only bills but also to sales invoices (useful if you’re going to on-sell the goods to another party) and to another new purchase order.

Copy contents to a new purchase order
Purchase order statuses

A purchase order can be tracked against a number of status.

  • Draft – initial status
  • Awaiting approval – similar to how invoices work
  • Approved – similar to how invoices work, not everyone can approve purchase orders.
  • Billed – used when a purchase order has been fully billed. This can happen automatically, when you copy the purchase order to a bill or be set independently.

Designing for touch

Xero works pretty well on iPads and other touch devices, but there’s more we can do. In purchase orders you’ll see a number of changes to the designs that are a direct result of thinking more about fingers. There’s more white space in the new data entry grid, row heights have been increased on drop-down lists and we’re even introducing some responsive screen widths.

We are so committed to this that all our designs now have a large shadow hand as a reminder that the finger is the future!

New purchase order screen shot


Not in the first release

There are a few things that won’t be in the first release but are being considered (but not guaranteed!) for future releases – let us know what you think.

  • Online purchase orders – similar to how you can send your customers a link to an online invoice.

  • Linking an existing bill to an existing purchase order – if different users independently create these documents you should still be able to link them up. In the first version, we are relying on you creating the bill from the purchase order in order to make the connection.

  • Importing purchase orders via CSV file.

  • Bulk copying multiple purchase orders to a single bill.

  • Receipting – as is currently the case, and even when POs are introduced, inventory quantities are only recognised once a bill/sales invoices has been raised. We aren’t currently planning on receipting items as they arrive.

What’s next?

A lot of the investment in the new touch-friendly screens will be reused when we deliver Quotes. Ultimately, we’ll also roll these updates across the bills and sales invoices.

To compliment the work in purchase orders we also have the early designs for enhanced inventory functionality which we’ll be presenting at the upcoming XeroCon events and on this blog later in the year.

Exciting stuff and more than enough to keep us busy!

Find out more about the changes released today



Read more about Business, Purchase Order



Ed Henry
29 July 2013 #

Will it be possible to use existing contact names and addresses as the delivery address on the purchase order? This way there will be no need to type in addresses for goods that are drop shipped direct to customers. This feature would complete the purchase order feature for me.
For the rest and the built in calculator you should hear me cheering from here!

29 July 2013 #

I see what you did there. Deflect anticipated moaning from me about PO’s not being in this release by whetting my interest with screenshots. I like it!
I personally really like getting updates like this (when you’re sure you’re going to release them and have done the design) because I can make a decision whether to wait or integrate an alternative. I will wait because this looks great.
I may be taking the piss here but given the move towards a touch interface it would be great to get other forms of data input to take advantage of mobile device features. eg. optionally using the camera to do QR / barcode scanning when adding Products to PO’s / invoices / stock count

James Worker
29 July 2013 #

Hi, am really looking forward to more invoice and inventory options becoming available, as I am operating a hire company off xero and can find nothing so far that integrates with zero for hiring inventory in and out, Thanks

Andrew Tokeley
29 July 2013 #

@Ed – good question. We’ve designed for this but unfortunately it won’t make the first release. We will, however, support adding delivery addresses at the time of creating the PO. On subsequent POs these saved delivery addresses will be available to use – however, they are not linked to a contact. Later on, we’ll allow you to search for a contact, while creating a PO, to pull in their address details.

Steve P.
29 July 2013 #

Will a future rollout include the ability for partial fulfilment and invoicing against purchase orders? Scheduled POs, like repeating bills would also be useful.

Andrew Tokeley
29 July 2013 #

@Steve – yes. when you copy a PO to a bill you can remove/edit any of the details to reflect what you are actually being invoiced for. You can do this multiple times until the PO is fully paid – at which point you can mark the PO as “Billed”.

Scheduled POs hasn’t been included at this stage and will be something we consider based on feedback – in the meantime, you will be able to copy an older PO to create a new one, but this would have to be done each time.

Afroz Ali
29 July 2013 #

Hi there,

I would like to make a suggestion in regards to deleting bank statements. At present the process is very time consuming as deleting statements is a manual process. i.e. ONE AT A TIME..

It would be great if there was a tick box option beside the statement line and this way multiple statements can be selected and deleted with one click of a button.


Elizabeth Salter
29 July 2013 #

This is looking great. Glad to hear we are almost there with PO’s.
And as for future release updates like this one – yes please! Like James mentioned, it’s really useful info in planning whether add-ons or a little waiting are required. ;)

Paul C
29 July 2013 #

Will the API be able to interact with the purchase order functionality from the first release?

I think the concept of linking existing bills to PO’s is quite important.

Warren Zylex
29 July 2013 #

Awesome awesome awesome! As @James mentioned above, i’ve also been hanging out for this and have been known to whinge about it on occasion via blog, community, etc. so it’s great to see an update with screenshots. I actually wrote out a whole post about how I imagined the purchase orders ‘module’ working for the community (never posted it, there’s a character limit but it’s saved to a doc so I might have to break it up and post it) – but the work displayed above is pretty similar anyway!

Good work @Andrew and the team – keep the updates coming, and screenshots are great, makes it all the more real.

One question – can you say if the ability to generate a PO from the mobile apps or interface will be possible from the start? Our team don’t always have a tablet to generate a PO when they pop into a supplier, and need to ring the office currently to get a PO issued – would be awesome if they could do it directly from their phones.

If you’d like a beta tester (or alpha, or whatever level it’s at), let me know!

Andrew Tokeley
29 July 2013 #

@Paul – just talked with the Product Manager for API. The decision to add support for POs to the API will be based on demand – once we deliver POs in Xero you could make a case for it here,, and see what sort of interest there is.

@Warren – thanks for the encouragement! Like you said, supporting POs on mobile makes a lot of sense, and is certainly on the mobile team’s list. No timeframes at this stage.

Charles Klvana
29 July 2013 #

Hi Tokes, the addition of PO’s is definitely looked forward to by many of our clients, however I’m still mystified by the heavy emphasis on touch. While I acknowledge that some people would do their accounts on an iPad or similar touch interface, I would have thought the great majority would still use a keyboard. I couldn’t imagine a large amount of clients generating purchase orders on an iPad or similar. Out of our 130+ clients in xero NONE use touch as their main way of interacting with their accounts. They might occasionally do a bank Rec or run reports via their tablet, but day to day use is their workstation with keyboard. So much faster & efficient, no? What’s more with the recent moves to landscape format tablets & OSs, the current move to single column long lists in zero (org settings) would seem to no longer apply. Will layouts change again as landscape tablets take over?

Chris Rogan
29 July 2013 #

All features useful – can’t wait, I’m relying on suppliers creating pro-forma invoices at the moment and it’s rather messy. Automatically emailing suppliers a link with the PO is also an excellent idea and is very useful, hope you prioritise that for a later release.

Brett Lester
29 July 2013 #

Good stuff. As for the upcoming possibilities that you have raised: Bulk copying multiple purchase orders to a single bill is something that I see as critical. It is extremely common for a supplier to issue one invoice covering multiple orders, especially when you purchase from them very frequently.

Richard Adams
29 July 2013 #

Well done guys, looks good. We’ve had lots of interest from clients as to when Xero were going to release a PO module and now we have something to show them at least.

I’ll look forward to being able to link a PO to an actual invoice in the future (we use Receipt Bank for all clients).

Getting the core functionality correct first is top priority and i’m sure once it’s up and running you’ll release your usual slew of updates as requested above :)

Richard Adams
29 July 2013 #

I also see Nathaniel Hornblower is back but in a new role.

Chris Dixon
29 July 2013 #

Andrew, I appreciate you aren’t providing full ERP type 3 way matching but if the PO statuses you listed above are the full list I think more are needed. The stages an order need to go through are:
Sent (may be implied from the history or the green tick mark if same as invoices)
Received (even if its just a status that doesn’t link to inventory or anything)
Billed (or Closed if fully billed?)
Returned (faulty goods etc,again just a status)

And of course the ability to display/report on POs by status as well as Supplier and Inventory Item etc.

I see Quotes appear in the screen shot, are they coming at the same time?

Andrew Tokeley
30 July 2013 #

@Charles – agree that a lot of people are current keyboard/mouse bound but we’re very conscious that the world is moving very quickly towards everything being touchable. Already laptops are coming out with touch screens and young children paw hopefully at their TV screens… it’s coming and we want to make sure Xero is ready for this. Building more reactive screen layouts is also something we’re looking at – so for example, if your device has a landscape or portrait aspect then the application could take advantage, not to mention making sure we design for different screen resolutions – lots to think about!

@Chris – thanks for the feedback, you’re right some of these states can be derived from things outside of the PO “status” tabs in the screen shot. We’ve talked about “Received” and “Returned” and steered away from these as they would ultimately require us to model partial statuses at the order line level – for example, I only returned a couple of items in the order, or only received some. At this stage, this needs to be handled by partially billing what you haven’t returned/receive and then marking a PO as billed when you’re happy it’s all been accounted for.

Andrew Tokeley
30 July 2013 #

@Chris – Quotes won’t be in this release. We haven’t started development on this yet but it can leverage some of the work we’re doing on the new designs and screens – which makes it easier. I’ll do a similar post to this when we’re a bit closer to delivering something. The first release will be pretty similar to what POs is but on the other side of the ledger.

Bhavani Depuru
30 July 2013 #

Hi Andrew

Good Job and we are waiting for a long time for this feature to add current Xero features since all most of all our off site clients asking for it….appreciate you and your team.

Just one question…can we create each list of items by supplier so that it will match according to supplier selling their product with their rates and it will pick up automatically list of items of selected supplier in process of creating purchase order.

Andrew Tokeley
30 July 2013 #

@Bhavani – being able to tag inventory as being supplied by a specific supplier (and prioritising this in the inventory lists when you raise a PO) isn’t something that is coming with the first version of POs. Good idea though. It would require some work on the inventory items themselves (to include a preferred supplier, for example) which we’re not tackling for this project. It could get picked up by the team working towards more inventory functionality and we have discussed this, although nothing concrete at this stage. Thanks for the feedback.

30 July 2013 #

A PO module will get me one step closer to moving to Xero. Will I be able to add custom fields to the lines on an order?

Andrew Tokeley
30 July 2013 #

@Bob – if you mean adding a new column to the invoice lines section, for example, “Weight” or something, then no. We have fixed columns on POs, the same ones that are available on invoices. You can include additional information on each line in the description field or add a new (zero valued) line that only contains a description, if that helps.

30 July 2013 #

We have a client using Xero and WorkFlowMax, they use Purchase Orders in WorkFlowMax, will these come across to Xero via the API?

Helen Dodsworth
31 July 2013 #

Great to hear about the enhanced inventory functionality. Could you give us a brief description of the planned features?

Andrew Tokeley
31 July 2013 #

@Matt – not at this stage. The POs you create and manage in WorkflowMax won’t appear in Xero.

@Helen – yep, sure will. I’ll be doing a similar blog to this on inventory at some point. I’d like to wait until we have progressed more, at this stage we are still going through the designs and haven’t started development (which often challenges the designs). If you can make it, I’ll also be giving a small sneak peek at our upcoming XeroCon events (

Nicole Russo
31 July 2013 #

Looking forward to Sept/Oct

1 August 2013 #

Thanks for the heads-up. We have 2 companies and both are looking forward to the PO addition. Very much appreciate the screen shots and knowing some of the key functions that are on your ‘to do’ list – keeps the troops happy! :)

1 August 2013 #


Will you be able to create a draft invoice, then copy over the items to a po without having to manually reenter the items and the customer delivery details to the PO? Also will future releases support milestone payments by customers against an invoice

Tina Kaye
2 August 2013 #

Love the pre-release updates! Looking very good! I think all of the optional extra’s sound like great features and hope they are built in.

Andrew Tokeley
2 August 2013 #

@John – copying a bill to a PO isn’t something we had planned to support (we will, of course, support copying a PO to a bill). However, if you’re thinking of this as a way to template a PO then you would be better off creating a draft PO and copying that to a new PO.

Nothing currently planned around supporting milestone payments against invoices, I’m afraid.

3 August 2013 #

Hi, will there be any features coming up with xero, or add-ons to zero, that help manage inventory billed sent out on hire or lease? i.e. when a customer hires a digger for the day, invoice is drafted etc and there is no report that will show that piece of inventory being hired out, or not being available for hire.

6 August 2013 #

Thanks @Andrew. We currently use MYOB, and we save plenty of time by creating a Sales order, which we can then convert to a PO- it brings across all the details. It the reverse of creating a PO then invoicing a customer (mentioned as a capability above). In our case it reflects our process a little better to have it the other way around

Andrew Tokeley
6 August 2013 #

@James – nothing planned at this stage within Xero itself – I don’t know all the capabilities of our add-on partners but check them out here,, to see if any fit the bill (make sure you have the correct country selected to see those available in your region).

@John – gotcha, thanks.

Paul Tucker
12 August 2013 #

Will there be any provision for adding linking PO’s and/or invoices to a job number or similar? So we can track all the PO’s and invoices relating to a specific job. That would be really helpful.

Andrew Tokeley
12 August 2013 #

@Paul – tracking jobs is something we’re looking at and we have some early designs exploring how we might do this with Purchase Orders, Quotes and Inventory – I don’t have a timeframe at this stage so in the meantime you might want to consider using tracking instead (

John S
14 August 2013 #

Hi Andrew,
Great to hear this is moving forward. We’ve been using a tracking field up until now to log our internal Job Numbers on Sales invoices and Purchases. Will the PO functionality have a Job Number or reference field we can continue to use? Will it be easy to maintain our current tracking items on the new PO format?

Please keep updating us on your progress in the screenshot format, agree it builds confidence in the product and the development roadmap!


Andrew Tokeley
14 August 2013 #

@John – yep, with the initial releases of POs you will be able to continue to use tracking as you are now. In the future we are exploring (in addition to tracking) how you mark a transaction against a job on not only POs but all types of transactions.

Matthew Minshull
14 August 2013 #

How about Copy contents to a new…

Order Acknowledgement – to send to customer
Pro-Forma Invoice – to send to customer with PayPal enabled
Delivery/Packing Note – to send to customer

As for the ‘optional extras’ the only one that interests me is to retrospectively link the documents.

14 August 2013 #

How about some simple cashflow reporting that links in purchase orders and due dates on sales invoices and bills. That would would be rad.

John S
15 August 2013 #

Thanks Andrew.
Good to hear you’re looking at it. It’s certainly something that is missing from a tracking perspective system wide. In the reports section, it would be nice to add a report to track the profitability of these jobs from a money coming in versus purchases going out perspective – essentially a Jobs P&L report.

15 August 2013 #

When doing large payments of creditors (but not all of them) is there a way to add a creditor to the payment without having to tick every invoice to pay. In other software you are able to select the creditor, put in the amount of payment and create a batch. Is there a way to do this in Xero???? Most frustrating having to tick all invoices and unable to continue onto a 2nd page with out losing the one that have been ticked. Help…………………

15 August 2013 #

Quoting from Xero would be brilliant.
Is there plans of offering docx quotes so we could customize our quotation according to our current layout?

This will make our sales process so much easier

Andrew Tokeley
16 August 2013 #

@Ros – afraid not. The best you can do now would be to apply a search to the list of outstanding invoices and increase the number of items displayed on the screen – hopefully this will allow you to select all the invoices in one go.

@Sebastian – yes, when we deliver Quotes, it will support DOCX customization too.

17 August 2013 #

Good work on this Xero! Will we be able to restrict certain users to be able to only access Xero PO functionality – so not be able to access other data through Xero such as Sales, Dashboards, Purchases etc. We have sales staff who we’d like to give the ability to raise PO’s but not be able to access any other other information in Xero?
I think what is even more useful and practical than CSV import is the ability to copy/paste from clipboard to a invoice/order/PO. it would be great to see a “Paste” function to paste items copied from Excel/CSV.
I have to say that so far I think the functionality looks perfect and I assume it think it would suit most organisations so I hope you will release the PO functionality ASAP as we are currently reviewing expensive 3rd party solutions to fill the current Xero PO functionality gap.

17 August 2013 #

What is the ETA for this feature?thanks

19 August 2013 #

I’m used to PO’s in my previous incarnation in the NZ Defence Force in SAP, at least in raising shopping carts, approving shopping carts from others etc. I look forward with…………….anticipation.

19 August 2013 #

Big deal. A purchase order system then. You have just described in great detail a bog standard accounting system function that your competitors have had all along.

19 August 2013 #

Great to see this feature coming. I’m not sure if this is the place for this comment or not, but here goes.

Like many I have been using draft bills as purchase orders, and one particular aspect of the behaviour is mildly irritating that I hope can be addressed as part of the release.

When I create a bill, I save it in drafts. So I have a lot of draft bills all with a blank date. On a given day I might want to convert three or four into actual bills.

I need to do this one by one because the dates are blank.

I start off in the draft bills page.

I open the first one, fill in the date and approve it.

I then want it to take me back to the screen where I was before … ie the draft bills screen.

Instead it puts me in the approved bills list.

So I need to click through back to draft in order to work on the next one.

It feels counter intuitive … if I’m working through my draft bills, it should lead me back to that list, not to the ‘next stage’?

I hope I’ve described this okay, and I’m not sure if others feel the same or have even read this far!

20 August 2013 #


I have couple questions:

1. Is it possible to add to Manual Journals future which would allowed to add lines between existing lines or move lines around like in sales invoices

2. It would be great to add extra box in purchase invoices for customer reference only. Some companies like mine use their own numerical sequence for purchase invoices.

20 August 2013 #

You know – at the rate you guys are going – Xero is going to become a fully fledged ERP solution.. invoicing, payroll, inventory, purchasing – all we need now is asset management & maintenance… !! You guys are 3/4s of the way there :D

Love the work!! I standby my position that Xero is by far the most user-friendly system I’ve dealt with.

Lisa Beavers
20 August 2013 #

please oh please oh please do something similar with invoices and give us an ESTIMATE to use instead of just draft invoices.

20 August 2013 #

I agree 100% with Kevin above, this is the same for invoices. I want it to go back to the page I was in, not the approved bills or invoices… Could Xero please explain the process logic with your method?

20 August 2013 #

Will it be possible to send the PO out as attachment in the email? Also Xero not set up for a large amount of RCTI , and can’t even send out a Purchase invoice, a bit annoying.

Andrew Tokeley
20 August 2013 #

@XZ – at the moment, access to POs will be the same as for Bills

@Kevin, @Sven – I know what you mean and I’ve passed this on to the team. By separating out POs from bills it should be less of a problem in this case though, as instead of approving the draft bill to create the real bill, you’ll be copying the PO to a new bill and working from there.

@Tom – in answer to your questions.

1. no plans yet to allow you to reorder lines on a manual journal.
2. POs will have two fields, one for Order Reference, e.g. PO123 and another, called Reference, which can be used for a customer reference (or anything else you need).

@Lisa – yep, Quotes will be much loved too. No ETA yet, but definitely on the list.

@Meng – yes, you will be able to attach the PO as a PDF to an email. You’re right, we haven’t built RCTI (aka buyer created invoices) functionality yet and yes, you “could” use POs for this purpose ;-)

20 August 2013 #

I am excited and relieved to see this new PO functionality and eagerly await the launch. A daily chore for our storeman is to chase up supplier orders not yet received. It is essential for us to be able to easily identify received orders and not yet received orders. Some systems I have seen enable you to send an email to the supplier requesting order status with one mouse click, no need for typing. We would like a couple of order status fields to enter an ETA and courier tracking number. This will enable us to respond to a customer quickly and professionally if they call chasing delivery. I would like to see additional tabs on the “Purchase Orders” screen after All, Draft, Awaiting Approval, Approved and Billed with “Received and Not Received”. If the ETA and tracking information was also visible from the Not Yet Received Tab this would enhance functionality.

Bronwyn Collin-Mills
21 August 2013 #

Hooray, the amount of time I spend raising PO’s in a Word template then re-key the same information into Xero when the invoice arrives. Can’t wait.

Deanne Fox
21 August 2013 #

Good Morning, Am excited about purchase order ability. Can you please advise if you can split a purchase order i.e Purchase order has 100 items and we recieve 50 on one and 50 at a later date. Will this then keep purchase order open to recieve remaining 50. Will there be a reporting function on open purchase order status. Many thanks Deanne

21 August 2013 #

For businesses such as mine who need an inventory system and use Unleashed to feed in to Xero- will Xero PO’s be able to be distinguished from Unleashed PO’s? I ask because currently, there is no way of distinguishing Unleashed credits from Xero credits when viewing these in Xero.

21 August 2013 #

This sounds really good.
Do you intend on having inventory management functionality similar to that of Unleashed?

Andrew Tokeley
22 August 2013 #

@Andrew – at this stage you’ll be able to use the Reference field for additional information about the PO. This is on the list screens and can be searched. Regarding marking things as “received”, we’re still discussing whether this is something we’re going to support. At this stage, for POs, you can mark a PO as “billed” – either at the time of copying a PO to a bill, or independently – but not marking it as received (and not billed). We’re trying to keep things relatively simple for POs and later for Inventory – and adding a receipting step does complicate things from an accounting point of view. Not saying it won’t happen – and the work we do on inventory is more likely to force our hand either way.

@Deanne – yes. you can copy a purchase order to a bill and edit the bill to only include the items you received/were billed for. When you copy the PO again to another bill, leaving only the remaining items, you can mark it as billed then.

@Helen/@Josh – integration with Unleashed won’t be able to change until (or if) our API supports POs too. Until then POs will remain in Unleashed as they do now. Later, Unleashed could make use of our API to push through POs – should probably ask them whether they would want to do this or not. Our API team will schedule this sort of enhancement based on demand. If we did support this, we could use a similar trick to invoices that come in via the API that can include a link to the original invoice in a 3rd party system (e.g. Freshbooks) – but this is all future stuff that’s not been fully thought through yet.

22 August 2013 #

In response to your reply about the reference field, this does not seem big enough or the appropriate location to store the supplier work order number, tracking number and ETA.

Can you please confirm whether the inventory item will now have an additional field to cover the suppliers part number? We need to specify the suppliers part number on all our PO’s. I imagine we are not alone with this requirement.

23 August 2013 #

I’m glad to hear that POs are imminent. Xero already stores both the Sales price and Purchase price in Inventory Items. It would be so useful to have a button in a Draft Sales Invoice to transfer the items and purchase prices to a Draft Purchase Order and it would save us so much time. All we would need to do then is select the supplier and remove the line items which weren’t being shipped from that particular supplier.

Also, when creating a PO from a Draft SI, it would be good if we could have a check box, “Ship direct to customer” to allow the supplier to be sent the customer’s address for delivery.

24 August 2013 #

There’s a common question on this thread as to whether there will be the ability to run reports in reference to Purchase Orders.

I’m presuming (…particularly hoping) a user will be able to run reports on the Purchase Orders (commitments) created?

Andrew Tokeley
26 August 2013 #

@Andrew – I’ll talk to the team about an additional inventory item attribute, I know we discussed it but it’s not currently in scope. Will see what we can do.

@Jason – the initial flow we’re supporting is going from a PO to sales invoices (or other document) rather than the other way round. You’re the second person to ask for this though, so we’ll be monitoring feedback on this.

@CZ – we aren’t shipping any PO reports initially, the main purchases dashboard will show you all the POs, grouped by status, and supports searching/filtering across these. We’re hoping this will be enough for most people as we’re probably going to wait until the work we are doing on our new reporting framework makes more progress before creating standalone reports.

28 August 2013 #

what date is the release? i have clients wanting to return to their previous software

4 September 2013 #

Can you provide an indication how far away the PO function is please. We have a company that currently does not use Xero, but the PO functionality would make it very attractive.

5 September 2013 #

At month end, will it be possible to accrue for issued purchase orders where the bill is not yet received?

Andrew Tokeley
5 September 2013 #

@Liz, @Ken – I mention (bravely) in the blog Sept/Oct, looking like Oct now… (but as I’ve said before, it’s always hard to be 100% sure, but we’re close!)

@Jonty – at this stage, we aren’t planning on receipting purchase orders prior to billing.

Mackie Gippets
13 September 2013 #

Will the Purchase Order be available through Xero API immediately upon release?

Andrew Tokeley
16 September 2013 #

@Mackie – not immediately, no. Will depend on demand and other things on the API team’s list. It’s certainly something they’re monitoring though, so I’d suggest you head on over to and have your say.

Ange Tancock
26 September 2013 #

Will the PO functionality be rolled out to the global version as per the estimated Oct 2013 timeline or will this be a limited release?

Geoff Shames
26 September 2013 #

Any updates on the purchase order functionality? We are considering switching to Xero after a recommendation from a colleague, but need this functionality to be in place before we make the switch.

Andrew Tokeley
27 September 2013 #

@Ange – yes, POs will be for everyone from the first release.

@Geoff – seems I was a bit optimistic about October, November is now more likely (so hard to predict when things land in this game, sorry)

Paul Kingston
1 October 2013 #

I am so glad to hear that PO’s are getting very very close. This function is certainly a very important one for our business and its driving us and suppliers bonkers not having the functionality of being able to raise a PO. As someone has mentioned it is also important to be able to search a customer address for “drop shipping” when placing a PO and also being able to specify a different invoice address so that customers do not receive invoices for drop shipment. Being able to have more than just a single physical and postal address on a saved customer file or the company would be extremely helpful. I am also hoping and assuming that there will be an Automatic PO numbering system rather than having to manually enter a number each time there is a new PO?

Martin McAleer
2 October 2013 #

I strongly second everything Paul has said above. The ability to generate POs, alternate addresses and automatic PO numbers will be a massive help. Rather than having to use a separate tracking system for POs as we do now and then manually enter them into Xero with all the chance of human error that entails.

Marcus Bekker
4 October 2013 #

Hi Guys… Im gagging for this release, hugely disappointed to see above you think its now been pushed back again! This might seem a silly question, but Im assuming that if you are adding PO functionality you will also have a basic stock control, i.e under inventory items, when you receipt a PO as having been delivered it will add the qty’s to the inventory items record? I guess its a silly question, but I couldn’t find it discussed here and currently I don’t see where in Xero you can see what you actually have in stock… I know this is a part of many add ons but all that Ive looked at are just too complicated for the basic functionality I’m sure a lot of us are looking for. Keep the updates coming… Cheers…

Andrew Tokeley
4 October 2013 #

@Marcus – the addition of more stock control functionality will come later and is certainly something we’re going to add. There is actually quite a bit to consider to add even basic stock functionality and POs can be delivered independently of this. POs won’t affect stock movements – initially at least, this will still be governed by approved bills, as it is now.

Craig Fogarty
7 October 2013 #

Will there be functionality within the security area to limit users being able to only raise PO’s as opposed to raise and authorise?

Kate Boyle
7 October 2013 #

I just started a paid account hoping this feature would be available once id activated. It still isnt available in my app. Very confusing!

michael reiter
8 October 2013 #

would be awesome to have a “create purchase order based on Sales order” button on the Sales order screen.

Would save a heap of rekeying etc for companies that run a drop ship method of distribution

Ken Jurgensen
10 October 2013 #

A client has been using QB Enterprise, but is looking to possibly moving to the cloud because one of their offices will be moving an hour away. They use purchase orders in QB. Will monitor release of p.o.’s in Xero to see if he can wait until they’re ready and move to Xero. He does about 200 p.o.’s a week. Thanks.

11 October 2013 #

Great to hear purchase orders very close – do you have an updated ETA
Really keen to be able to get line items from sales feeding into purchase orders
In our business sales to customers drive need to purchase stock so be great not to have to go backwards. Rachel

Gillian Rossouw
17 October 2013 #

Awesome news PO – update from the Xero Roadshow, Brisbane, yesterday believe is “that close” many of my clients will be jumping for joy.

Bea Shrewsbury
18 October 2013 #

Please tell me how soon this is as we are about to buy an add-on. We need this as a matter of urgency!

Andrew Tokeley
18 October 2013 #

That’s right Gillian – no promises, but we’re looking good for a November release!

Yvonne Evans
18 October 2013 #

Hi Xero,
Great news things are moving on the PO front, is there any chance this will be done and live this side of Christmas,.
I’ve repeatedly told my CEO it’s on its way and I would like to be able to give him some better news, i.e it is in and working.


21 October 2013 #

Hi, I’m new to Xero & Loving it so far. I want to say a great effort by all involved!! Well Done.

I’m interested to know if Quoting will be released this side of the new year?

24 October 2013 #

We have been using a competing product for a long time, and have been ready to switch to Xero since we first saw it. Lack of POs as a core function are the deal breaker though. It doesn’t make sense for us to switch systems only to use work arounds for such an important feature. I hope it is still a high priority.

26 October 2013 #

“Receipting – as is currently the case, and even when POs are introduced, inventory quantities are only recognised once a bill/sales invoices has been raised.” Sorry i am a newbie evaluating a new system. The lack of reciepting at Good-In seems bizarre. This means the system is not ISO13485 , ISO 9001 compliant. We need to know what has arrived and obviously only send to Bill what is correct and present. We also need to send the goods to a correct warehouse location. Perhaps I have misunderstood?

Andrew Tokeley
29 October 2013 #

@Walter – still haven’t made a final decision on how we are going to handle receipting yet. We will deliver POs initially without it but when we deliver Inventory we have to be able to support selling stuff that you haven’t yet been billed for but have received. Will present more details on what we have planned here closer to the time of delivering (no ETA yet, I’m afraid).

Mark prieditis
29 October 2013 #

Can’t wait for inventory lite , please hurry

Matthew Minshull
29 October 2013 #

@Andrew – Hi, any idea when Contact address selection for Ship To address will be available? Almost ALL our purchase orders are delivered direct to Customer.

I appreciate that once an address is used, it is then stored, so rather suspect that by the time this is released it will be a case of locking the stable door after the horse has bolted! :(

Will these previously used addresses be stored against a reference; e.g. Customer name?

30 October 2013 #

Hi Andrew – just reading the thread again and noticed comments by someone else. Are you saying that the PO will not have any Stock implications at launch ie. the products on the PO will not show in the inventory list as ‘on order’? And if this is correct, please can you say how long it will be that the tie in between PO and Inventory is done. I think this is very important for us. I beleive in the Xero project as the one more SaaS focused, but Quickbooks has all this functionality now and more. I just worry the latter is too split on their focus to their desktop customers.

I really need to hear (and i am sure i speak for others on this thread) that Xero is going to beef up their inventory and supply side to their offering and fast. Can you help out a little? Thanks,

30 October 2013 #

Andrew -sorry one more question.. I have also seen that Quickbooks have an integration with Magento that allows 2 way syncing. This is important particularly for payments so that the accounts team can enter a payment in Xero and it appears in Magento (since that is the master). The Carry The One integration looks very good for Xero but it does not have this 2 way feature. Can you tell me if this is a restriction from Xero on their API or if this is something that integrator apps could later add? Thanks.

Trudi Biggar
30 October 2013 #

@Andrew, our accountant and myself have been trying to convince my director to move from MYOB to Xero for a long time now, I now have everything set up and was planning on a 1 November start date for switching alliances :) One question though. Being able to create quotes, purchase orders, select the delivery address from customer list, invoice from purchase order, backorder to a new purchase order when the original one is not sent in full, and use multi currency, etc is very important to us. Can you please suggest some good add ons that I can use to stick to my 1 November date? We do about 250 purchase orders/sales a month.

Ronan Quirke
30 October 2013 #

Here are a few worth checking out:
– Unleashed Software:
– TidyStock:
All the above are good off the shelf solutions and just a sample of what is available (

Given your timelines, it might be worthwhile seeing if your accountant is an Unleashed partner or if they work with any of their implementation partners ( – getting set up correctly is the key to a tool like this, so being able to rely on an implementation partner to do so could be really helpful.

Andrew Tokeley
30 October 2013 #

@Matthew – the team are committed to allowing you to search for delivery address by customer in the next update for POs after the initial release. My guess is that this will be in the first release of the new year (currently set at 27 Jan). The addresses that you enter manually (before we allow you to search by customer) aren’t stored against a contact or other reference. If, after the update, you don’t want them to appear in the delivery address list anymore you can delete them.

@Walter – we are definitely committed to building out our Inventory capability but we wanted to release POs first – plenty of people want this even if they don’t need inventory control. POs won’t appear in the inventory list reports as “on order” – this sort of work is being done as part of the inventory project. Sorry, I can’t give you a firm date yet – too early to tell with any accuracy – but it won’t be this year.

The API supports 2 way integration (you can raise invoices, manage inventory items for example), but our experience is that most inventory add-ons prefer to handle all the ordering/invoicing/inventory management aspects within their own product and simply post the financial data to Xero. Things quickly get complicated trying to keep the two in sync.

30 October 2013 #

Andrew Tokeley
18 October 2013 #
That’s right Gillian – no promises, but we’re looking good for a November release!

So you have slipped? I held off buying the add-on in October …. Please be realistic on your dates (I know from bitter experience!).

SUGGESTION: As a stopgap can you not just add the ability to print a draft purchase invoice as a purchase order (I print draft sales orders as a PROFORMA invoice? That would help me! Anyone agree?

31 October 2013 #

@Andrew – thanks. So what if you have Xero, Unleashed and then Magento. Which system is the master? Will payments in Xero reflect elsewhere? I prefer to have staff use Magento for SOP as it works and has superb granular access permissions, and we have experience taking orders on it. We dont see any reason to restrict access to online customers. We want to allow internal staff to orders. This will be pushed int Xero. We dont need any pick/pack functionality from Unleashed as we have written our own brilliant pick/pack/despatch App which integrates with magento API and has touch screen, scales and barcode reader to ensure items are packed properly with Xero mistakes. So really the only reason to buy Unleashed would be to issue a PO and manage stock – no sales orders, no despatch. Seems like a huge waste of time and money to get Unleashed when Magento is nearly there.

Andrew Tokeley
31 October 2013 #

@Bea – steady on, it’s still October! Yes, we are still looking good for November. We have a scheduled release on November 11 which is tagged to include the first release of POs. It’s extremely difficult to predict when things land in this game (which is why most software companies don’t even try – I’m bucking the trend here. Rebel) but not long to wait now.

@Walter – this really depends on the other systems. Xero, in general, does not push data out to other systems, instead, these systems pull information from Xero. Our PO and Inventory solutions may be enough for you, without requiring Unleashed, but without knowing your business or workflows it’s hard to say for sure.

Rex Fredericks
1 November 2013 #

Currently operating with QB online , Xero seems to be doing much better things and often that’s not too difficult.
What is holding us back from converting to Xero is the “apparent” lack of ability to create an estimate or proposal and then convert it to an invoice within Xero. Am I correct in this appraisal?

Andrew Tokeley
4 November 2013 #

@Rex – at present, the only way to do this is to create a draft sales invoice (you can make this appear like a quote through invoice branding) and approve (or copy) it once you’ve secured the work. However, the good news is we have committed to building a proper Quote function as soon as possible. Always hard to say when it will land but am hopeful it will be in the first half of next year.

Anja Jones
6 November 2013 #

We are sooo happy that purchase orders will be implemented soon. We have been making do with draft bills for the last 2 years, but they don’t look particularly pretty, and you can’t email them straight from Xero, so this will save us a LOT of time when creating bulk POs at the end of the month – well done guys, love your work :)

purchase order system
6 November 2013 #

simplified the way that Purchase Orders (POs) are raised, sent for approval & later sent to suppliers. I think xero provides easily po system.

6 November 2013 #


Can you tell me when Purchase Orders will be available on Xero to use please? Many thanks

7 November 2013 #

@Andrew, so can you confirm that the PO function will added on the 11th of November?

Andrew Tokeley
8 November 2013 #

@John – yes!

Christine Hills
8 November 2013 #

I came on line to see if there was a purchase order that can be added to xero as we have an urgent requirement for this, and was pleased to see that a new section of the system is due in 3 days! – wow, how exciting.
I only have a manual system running at present, this will ease my workload.

Please keep me in the loop

9 November 2013 #

That is fantastic news. Will we have the option to ship to a different address that is stored in the contact cards for the customer.?

Andrew Tokeley
11 November 2013 #

In case you all missed today’s blog and release – – we’ve got the first release of purchase orders over the line!

Thanks for your patience everyone.

Roni Lennon
11 November 2013 #


Most suppliers need to have THEIR part number on a purchase order. When will Inventory be changed to allow for this?

14 November 2013 #

I haven’t had a chance to use them yet myself, however, a client has asked me specifically to tell you he is very happy with the new feature!

His only negative feedback was that he had to manually populate the ‘Delivery address’ field, he would like to be able to select an existing contact. Other than that, good job!

Andrew Tokeley
15 November 2013 #

@Zoe – you can tell your client that we’ll be allowing them to select a client address very soon :-)

Office Domain
22 February 2014 #

Is there a way to convert a sales order/invoice to Purchase order?
If not is this a feature you plan to provide in the future?
Thanks for your help in advance.

Andrew Tokeley
24 February 2014 #

@Office Domain – no this isn’t currently possible, I’m afraid, we only support copying a PO to a Bill or another PO. We may generalise being able to copy anything to anything at a later date – no timeframe on this yet though.

Peter Harding
20 March 2014 #


The major problem I have with the PO system is an inability to print/export a list of POs to allow further offline analysis. Similarly there are other Xero screens (eg list of all unpaid sales invoices) where highly useful information is produced but cannot be printed or downloaded. Will the new reporting which has been mentioned pick this sort of thing up ?



Purchase Order System
7 April 2014 #

Hi xero, Did you made auto approval system?

Star Invoice
7 April 2015 #

I use Pro Forma Invoice at as my online invoicing solution. It is very easy to use and I can manage unlimited companies, unlimited clients, products, invoices and much more. I can even email the invoice directly to my client and give the invoice any heading I wish. If you are looking for an online tool which is easy and mobile, then you have to check out Star Invoice.

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