Excel Report Fix for your Free Purchase Order Software

Excel Reports BustedWith the help of some of our friends in the Free-Procurement Community, we found and corrected a couple problems in the Free Version of SpendMap related to exporting reports to Excel.  Thanks Cathy and Therina, for helping us track this down!

Depending on your version of Windows and Excel, SpendMap might exit and/or produce a Runtime Error when it tries to create the spreadsheet, after generating the report.

Please select the menu HELP > CHECK FOR UPDATES within SpendMap to update your system.  This is a “patch” only (i.e. not a version upgrade), so it will not change any features and your system will remain at version 14.

Sorry for the inconvenience, folks.  If you have any questions, you can reach us via our free support ticket system.

Purchase Order Numbers in Free PO Software

We’ve had a few questions about the exclamation marks (!) that show before and after the PO number on Purchase Order forms in the Free Version of SpendMap…

Purchase Order Numbers when previewing

The exclamation marks will only show when you “preview” the PO in your Purchase Order Work Area.  We do this in case someone gets their hands on it, so they know it’s not an official order yet.

Some form layouts also include something like “Draft copy – do not process” somewhere on the form.

When you process the Purchase Order and print an official copy and/or e-mail the PO to your supplier, it will not have the exclamation marks.

For clarity, you should not be sending preview/draft copies of Purchase Orders to your suppliers.  Rather, you should be using the following utility to “process” your new orders when they are ready…
PURCHASING > Purchase Orders > Process New POs > Process my POs

…or you can select to “process now” when prompted upon exiting your PO Work Area.

Hope that helps.  Have a good day!

The Unknown Future and your Free Purchase Order Software

Melonie wants to give the Free Version of SpendMap a try but she doesn’t know what the future may hold for her startup company…

“I ran across your free procurement system and I am wondering how easy it is to get the data back out of the system if the company decides to change systems down the road.  Is it possible to easily dump the data into excel and switch systems?”

Sure thing Melonie.  We hope you stick with us but you can get all your information out of SpendMap anytime you want.  You can export your data to Excel and other types of files too (e.g. ASCII, TXT, CSV).

First off, any of the reports in SpendMap can be exported to Excel.  Think Purchase Order history, department spend history, item history, etc…

po-software-excel-report

 

There are also many dedicated export utilities for common things like Master File data (suppliers, items, users, account codes, etc.).  Check out the options under the Utility > Data Interfaces section of each module.

Finally, in the unlikely event that you need something that isn’t included in the reports or dedicated exports, you can get at anything else using Utility > Data Interfaces > Export Any Table.

Growing with SpendMap

Please also keep in mind that, as your company grows, SpendMap can grow along with you.

As your needs expand, you can upgrade from the Free Version of SpendMap to our paid/commercial version at any time to get access to additional modules/functionality, more advanced technology (e.g. web-based, mobile support, etc.), and we have a full line of Professional Services that larger companies will appreciate, like training and implementation consulting, custom programming, and so on.

When you upgrade from the Free Version to our paid/commercial version, we can bring all your information forward, including all your Purchase Order and other history, master files, configuration settings, etc.

 

Retiring Last Year’s Free Purchase Order Software (v12.65)

It has been a few months since we released version 14, so now the time has come to officially stop supporting the previous Free Version of SpendMap (v12.65).

Please upgrade at your earliest convenience.  The upgrade utility will bring forward all your data, history, settings, etc., so you will not lose any of your work in SpendMap.

For instructions on how to upgrade your system and a list of new features, from within SpendMap please select the menu HELP > CHECK FOR UPDATES.  This will not actually install the upgrade.  Rather, if you are using v12.65, this will expose a red hyperlink at the bottom of the Main Menu in SpendMap…just click the hyperlink to see full upgrade instructions.

Thanks,
The Free-Procurement Project Team
Totally FREE software that automates Purchase Orders and a whole lot more
Powered by SpendMap

Upgrade your Free Purchase Order Software

Auto-Receive Purchase Orders in your Free PO Software

If you are using the Receiving Module in SpendMap but don’t want to enter receipt transactions for certain Purchase Orders, you can use the Auto Receipts feature to automatically receive/close those POs on their delivery dates.

For example, weekly landscaping services or perhaps a PO for an educational course might be automatically received so that the orders don’t show on the Late PO Report, etc.

First enable the feature for one or more of your PO Number Sets, by checking the option “Auto Receipt?”, in here…
– PURCHASING > Setup system > Incrementing document number sets > POs

Once enabled, when you enter new POs for that Number Set, you will have access to the Auto Receive checkbox at the top-right of the PO Header Screen…

Auto Receive PO

Now that you have indicated which orders are to be auto-received, you can run the Auto Receipt Utility as often as you like to actually receive/close the applicable orders.  Only orders that are 1) set to Auto Receive and 2) have reached their delivery dates, will be closed when the utility is run…
– RECEIVING > Utility > Auto-receive POs

TIP: enable the option in the [Permissions] Folder of your user account to “Prompt upon login to auto-receive applicable POs?” so that you never forget.

Budget threshold warning in your Free Purchase Order Software

We added a new feature in v14 of SpendMap that can help you stick to your budget by proactively warning you when you’re running out of money.

In Cost Center History/Budget Settings, you can establish the “budget threshold”.  For example, you might want to be warned once you’re down to, say, 20% of the budget remaining (i.e. 80% budget consumed).

While entering new POs, the hyperlink that shows the total value of the order at the top of the Purchase Order Header Screen will change from green to yellow when the budget threshold has been reached.  Then the hyperlink will eventually change to red when there’s nothing left in the budget.

Budget warning on Purchase Order screen

TIP: Click through that hyperlink to see the full budget details.

On a related note, you can also prohibit/stop the processing of Purchase Orders and other documents that will exceed the budget, using the related options in Cost Center History/Budget Settings…

Budget settings in free Purchase Order Software

Our technology surplus and your Free Purchase Order Software

Seth Godin is really good at stating the obvious but at the same time adding value.  Read his blog post on Wasting our technology surplus.

So what are you going to do with all the time and effort that your free Purchase Order Software saves you?

Will you “play video games and hang out” or use that extra time for strategic, value-added initiatives, like choosing better suppliers and negotiating lower pricing for your company?

Either way, we’re happy to be part of the solution!

Best regards,
– The Free-Procurement Project team

Control spending to save money

Separate PDF files to send Purchase Orders to suppliers by e-mail

Imran works in the Engineering Services field and was asking about the best way to create PDF files of his Purchase Orders to send to his suppliers when using the free version of SpendMap.Many-POs-in-PDF

“While processing a PO, how do I print the buyer’s copy and seller’s copy separately?
…it is printing both pages together.”

Imran is printing both a “supplier’s copy” as well as an “internal copy” of his Purchase Orders, and both are ending up in a single PDF file (since both copies are in the same print job).

This would also be an issue when processing multiple POs for multiple suppliers at the same time.  For example, if you processed 5 POs in your PO Work Area for 5 separate suppliers, if you chose to print to a PDF file, you would get a single PDF file containing all 5 orders, again, since all are coming from the same print job.

If you’re printing hard copies (on paper), this doesn’t matter because you’ll just grab the pile of POs off the printer and give each one to the applicable supplier.  But if you’re printing to PDF (most likely to send to your suppliers by e-mail as Imran is trying to do), then you will end up with a single PDF with all POs in a single file, which obviously won’t work.

Solution: Use SpendMap’s Email Module to send the supplier their PDF file.

Instead of enabling multiple copies of your printed POs in PO Printing Settings, just use SpendMap’s built-in email feature to send the supplier their copy of the order.  When you process new orders, SpendMap will create a PDF copy of the PO, attach it to an e-mail message, and will send it to the supplier automatically, with no manual intervention (i.e. it all happens behind-the-scenes, so there is no need to manually create PDF files, manually create e-mail messages, and then attach the applicable PDFs to the applicable e-mails.

(more…)

How to display ONLY those items from the supplier on your Purchase Order

There is a new feature in version 14 of SpendMap that you can use to limit the items that your staff can select while entering Purchase Orders, such that they will only be able to select the standard items that you have set up for that supplier in advance.  That is, you can prohibit the use of non-standard items/suppliers.

Just use the new setting in PO Entry Settings, which you can find here…
– PURCHASING > Setup system> Purchase Order settings > PO entry settings

Listing only-items-for-supplier in PO Software

Alternatively, without this formal restriction, users can also search for items by supplier while entering new POs.

Finally, if you forgo the restriction and allow your staff to select non-standard items/suppliers but still want to know when it’s happening, you can use the setting “Log if non-standard supplier is chosen”, in System Alert Log Settings…
– PURCHASING > Setup system > System alert log settings

 

Upgrade your Free Purchase Order Software to 2016 Release

If you are using v12.65 of the Free Version of SpendMap, you can now upgrade to the 2016 release (Version 14).  You can check your current version number using the menu Help > About.

The new release includes more than 30 new features and capabilities, in addition to various performance improvements.

Easy Upgrade Utility

The upgrade utility will bring forward all your data, history, settings, etc., so you will not lose any of your work in SpendMap.

Just log into your current v12.65 SpendMap system and select the menu HELP > CHECK FOR UPDATES.  This will download a patch to your v12.65 system – you will still be at v12.65 at this point but you will now see a red hyperlink at the bottom of the Main Menu of SpendMap…you can click that hyperlink to see full upgrade instructions before actually upgrading to v14 .

Upgrade your free PO Software