Understanding Supplier Maintenance

PeopleSoft procurement applications capture and track supplier information to ensure that you can satisfy suppliers by having the answers to their questions at your fingertips. You can enter straightforward or complex supplier definitions that capture an organization's true relationship with a supplier. You can also enter information from conversations with suppliers to manage your contacts more effectively. Even if you have not spoken to a supplier contact for months, your supplier profile enables you to recall details as though you had your last conversation yesterday.

This section discusses:

  • Supplier profiles.

  • Suppliers in the control hierarchy.

  • Supplier locations.

  • Supplier definition.

  • PeopleSoft eSupplier Connection.

  • Supplier relationship management.

  • Supplier approval.

  • Supplier archiving.

  • Single payment suppliers.

  • Duplicate supplier checking.

  • Supplier audit.

Within PeopleSoft applications, all payees are considered suppliers. This includes suppliers, employees, attorneys, and so on. You create supplier profiles to store all the information that you need to know about suppliers to manage their interests and yours proactively. The information that you provide is up to you. It can be as simple as a supplier name and address or, more likely, a wealth of information about payment terms and methods as well as voucher processing defaults.

Supplier information is principally shared by PeopleSoft Payables and Purchasing, so that one or both departments can enter supplier information. You may want to set up your system so that purchasing users can enter supplier information, but only accounts payable users can approve suppliers for payment, or vice versa; it's up to you.

To create or update supplier profiles for all types of suppliers in either product, you use the pages in the Supplier Information component (VNDR_ID). PeopleSoft has organized the system to help you easily enter, update, and inquire in these primary areas:

  • Supplier identification.

  • Supplier approval.

  • Supplier conversations.

  • Supplier bank accounts.

  • Supplier withholding information.

All supplier information for regular suppliers, one-time suppliers, and permanent suppliers is stored in the same set of supplier tables. So if you decide that the one-time supplier that you used last week on a trial basis is the ideal company to use for a long term remodeling project, you merely update the Persistence field on the Identifying Information page, without re-keying information or storing redundant data.

As you enter supplier profiles into the system, you can define a set of suppliers for each business unit, or you can share suppliers across multiple business units. You can even define multiple locations for a supplier.

The following diagram shows how supplier information is positioned in the PeopleSoft procurement control hierarchy. As you define suppliers, you can specify various types of control information, such as duplicate invoice checking and voucher approval processing, that either appears by default from the hierarchy or can be overridden and changed for a specific supplier:

PeopleSoft procurement control hierarchy

A supplier location is not a physical address. It is a default set of rules, or attributes, that define how you conduct business with a particular supplier. A supplier location comprises information such as procurement options (including payment terms, currency information, and shipping method), VAT options, payment options, withholding options, pay to bank accounts, and so on. And although a location is not an address, it does reference addresses.

Your supplier may need only one location. If the supplier uses the same set of rules across its business, you can enter one location for your supplier, and you're ready to go. If, however, your supplier uses different sets of procurement rules for different portions of its business (different branches, sites, or offices, for example), PeopleSoft procurement products enable you to set up the supplier with multiple locations, each with its own unique set of business rules.

If, for example, company ABC has offices in New York, Vancouver, and London, each office may require different currency information, payment terms, pay to bank accounts, VAT or sales and use tax (SUT) requirements, and so on. In this case, you could set up the supplier with three locations (that is, three sets of rules—one for each office).

Suppliers may also have unique requirements for pricing and remitting. For this reason, from each supplier location, you can also point to other supplier locations for remitting and pricing. (The supplier's invoice information and payment terms reside at the supplier location level, so it makes sense to determine the remitting and pricing rules here.)

If your supplier has only one address from which it conducts all its procurement functions (ordering, invoicing, remitting, and returning), enter the one address on the Supplier Information - Address page; the system uses this address as the default for all of the functions on the Supplier Information - Location page. Some suppliers have different addresses for different procurement functions. For this reason, the system enables you to enter several different addresses for each supplier location.

Returning to the previous example, company ABC's offices may each have multiple addresses for ordering, invoicing, remitting, and returning. Because they have different procurement rules, each office has its own location; because each location may have different addresses for different business transactions, each location can have multiple addresses.

In summary, a supplier can have many physical addresses. A location can also have many addresses. Equally, addresses can be shared between locations. Some suppliers may not be this complicated; they may only require one location and one address. Other suppliers may have several locations and addresses. The PeopleSoft system accommodates both types of suppliers.

When you're preparing to enter a new supplier into the system, you first gather all the information that you need to track for the company with which you're doing business, such as:

  • Identifying information, including status, class, and other basic business information that tells you what kind of supplier you're entering.

  • Physical addresses for the supplier.

  • Location information, including remit to and pricing locations.

  • Procurement defaults that define your relationship with your supplier and tell the system how to handle purchasing and accounts payable transaction errors and approvals.

  • Payment options that establish defaults for payment processing.

  • Information used to process withholding.

  • Information used to process VAT.

  • SUT information.

  • Supplier contacts.

  • Supplier bank accounts used for EFT processing.

You can also use PeopleSoft self-service applications to enhance your supplier relationships. PeopleSoft eSupplier Connection is a baseline supply side self-service web application designed to provide suppliers with convenient, flexible, and easy access to information. Suppliers access PeopleSoft eSupplier Connection to view and modify their own business information—company address, phone, and contact data. They can also review schedule, invoice, payment, order, and receipt activity, as well as view their account balances and the invoices related to those balances. In addition, with PeopleSoft eSupplier Connection you can direct your suppliers to transact on Request for Quotes (RFQs), purchase order acknowledgements (POAs), and Advanced Shipment Notifications (ASNs) for dispatched purchase orders. When dispatching using email, you can automatically include a link for the supplier which takes them into the appropriate PeopleSoft eSupplier Connection page for RFQs and Purchase Orders. To enable a supplier to access PeopleSoft eSupplier Connection, you define a supplier side user using the Define Supplier User component.

Note: Pages used to define Supplier User information are specifically used for external supplier access and are not used for internal access to PeopleSoft Purchasing or PeopleSoft Payables.

This process flow illustrates the steps for managing supplier relationships from setting up the supplier to entering procurement and payment options and approving the supplier:

Managing supplier relationships process flow from setting up to approving suppliers

The PeopleSoft Supplier component provide workflow for users to approve a supplier. Workflow approvals enable you to direct supplier approvals to the correct people in the correct order. You can choose one of two different workflow methods:

  1. PeopleTools workflow technology documented in the PeopleTools documentation: Workflow Technology.

    This workflow method, enables you to approve a supplier using standard PeopleSoft workflow where approvers can view suppliers for approval and approve them using the Supplier Approval component (APPROVE_VENDOR). A supplier is automatically set to approved status if the user who entered it is set up as an approver. To implement workflow approvals, you define the roles, rules, and routings using the PeopleSoft Application Designer, PeopleCode, and Workflow Administrator. Oracle delivers the PeopleSoft system with basic approval rules already established. You cannot enter vouchers for a supplier until the supplier has been approved. Likewise, a supplier must be approved and open for ordering before you can enter purchase orders (POs) for the supplier. You set up supplier approvers on the User Preferences - Procurement page.

  2. PeopleSoft Approval Framework documented in the documentation Enterprise Components: Approval Framework

    This workflow method enables you to approve a supplier using the approval framework. With proper authorization, an approver can add other approvers, called ad hoc approvers, to the current or a later stage of the approval process. Reviewers and ad hoc reviewers can be part of the workflow. Reviewers can see the approval but do not approve it. Setting up this method requires less technical skills than setting up standard PeopleTools workflow technology.

Note: You can use either workflow method for approving suppliers.

see the product documentation for PeopleTools: Workflow Technology

Before you can archive a supplier, you must first archive the payments and then the related vouchers for that supplier. You can archive inactive suppliers from your system by using the Supplier Archive Request Process page.

Since archiving a supplier is similar to inactivating a supplier—users cannot enter new vouchers for this supplier—you must have the authority to inactivate suppliers to archive suppliers. Use the Supplier Processing Authority page in the User Preferences component (OPR_DEFAULT) to grant authority to users.

PeopleSoft Payables enables you to enter a voucher for a one-time supplier without adding rows to supplier tables. You must set up at least one single payment supplier, which is used as the master supplier for single payment vouchers. The master supplier can include such general information as tax, payment method, payment terms, and bank account defaults. You enter any information that is particular to a supplier—such as the supplier's name and address—directly on the single payment voucher. PeopleSoft recommends that you define a single payment supplier for each tax environment you work in, in situations where supplier tax information is used to calculate tax on transactions.

Note: If financial sanctions validation is enabled at the installation level, the system validates the supplier upon saving the voucher. If financial sanctions validation is enabled at the bank level, the system validates the supplier upon saving the voucher only if you specify a bank for the remit supplier and the bank requires financial sanctions validation. If the system determines that the supplier has a potential match on a financial sanctions list, you can save the voucher and put the payment on hold, save the voucher and not put the payment on hold, or not save the voucher.

The system does not update the single payment supplier's financial sanctions status on the Supplier Information component, because it is only a template for single payment suppliers.

PeopleSoft enables you to check for duplicate suppliers in real-time when you enter new suppliers in the Supplier Information component. You can also run a report to find duplicate suppliers. The system can check for duplicate suppliers based on the address, city, and state. When the system identifies duplicate suppliers, it provides the supplier ID in the message to assist you in identifying duplicate suppliers.

You can set validation options independently for active and inactive suppliers, enabling you to define whether to provide or not provide warnings or to reject an active or inactive supplier on each field type. This feature provides more control in identifying duplicate suppliers. Suppliers can also fine tune the duplicate supplier search criteria.

You can also enable duplicate supplier checking in online registration and supplier change requests. See Setting Up the Online Registration System and Setting Up Supplier Change Requests.