Manchester City Council

Business & investment Supplier information - no purchase order - no pay

Purchase order policy for our suppliers

We operate a 'No PO, No Pay' (No Purchase Order, No Payment) policy as part of the established Finance Shared Service Centre (SSC).

All suppliers of goods and services to the Council must not, under any circumstances, accept any verbal or written order from any member of Council staff unless a SAP Purchase Order (PO) number is given.

Q: Why did Manchester City Council implement the policy of No Purchase Order, No Pay?
The policy was implemented to increase efficiency in the procurement process across Manchester City Council.

This follows on from an implementation of SAP systems, which allows a streamlined procurement process.

Q: Will I get paid any quicker if I quote a PO number?
Unless prior agreed, the Manchester City Council standard payment terms of 30 days from receipt of a valid invoice will remain.

Invoices received without a valid PO number will not be paid and will be returned.  This will lead to a delay in the payment process.

Q: What checks should be made for returned invoices?
Please check that the PO number is valid for the goods/service supplied.

Also, examine the returned invoice for any errors and then communicate to the finance shared service centre your invoice number and valid PO number.

Q: What is the PO number sequence for your SAP system?
Valid Purchase Order numbers from Manchester City Council will be in the format '41nnnnnnnn' where 'n' is a number

Q: Past invoices without a PO number have been paid by Manchester City Council. Will this still happen?
As a result of formalising our purchasing arrangements, from 1st December 2008 all financial commitments for goods and services must be made using a purchase order. Transactions outside of this process will not be recognised.

As part of the 'No PO, No Pay' policy the supplier is expected to put the valid PO number on the invoice, otherwise it will be returned.

If you send an invoice to the Council without quoting a valid Purchase Order number and / or you send your invoice to anywhere other than the Finance Shared Service Centre we will consider your invoice in "dispute" as you will have failed to follow the Council's instructions. 

Q: An invoice has been returned requesting a valid PO number to be provided. How can this be obtained?
You should contact the Manchester City Council member of staff who gave the original instruction to supply the goods or service and ask them to provide a PO number.

When obtained, tell the Finance Shared Service Centre via email or telephone, together with your original invoice number.

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