Receipt and Inspection

This phase of the purchasing cycle involves the physical transmittal of purchase requirements (see Exhibit 2.1 with further details in Exhibit 2.8). This should be a fairly routine, although not necessarily the most efficient, part of the purchasing cycle. Some organizations transmit orders electronically, whereas others send material releases through the mail or by fax. Purchasing or materials planning must minimize the time required to release and receive material. Electronic acknowledgement and receipt involves the electronic transfer of purchase documents between the buyer and seller, and can help shorten order cycle time. Purchasing or a materials control group must monitor the status of open purchase orders. There may be times when a purchaser has to expedite an order or work with a supplier to avoid a delayed shipment. A buyer can minimize order follow-up by selecting only the best suppliers and developing stable forecasting and efficient ordering systems. The receiving process should also be made as efficient as possible by using bar code technology to receive and place supplier deliveries in inventory.

The shipping and receiving processes require several other important documents that also can be electronic, including the material packing slip, the bill of lading, and the receiving discrepancy report.

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