Q: Can I make changes to a blanket purchase order (BPO)?
A: Yes. Changes (both increases and decreases) and cancellations can be applied to both standard and blanket purchase orders. Contact the business office if you would like to make any changes to your POs.
Q: Can I still create a BPO in the middle of the year?
A: Yes. If your going to pay the vendor more than four times in a year, it is easier to use the BPO than writing separate POs.
Q: Can I use more than one budget line for the BPO?
A: BPO's work better if they're created with one budget number, unless you want to assign an equal percentage to each GL when paying the invoices.
Q: What does it mean if I still see an encumbrance on a purchase order (PO)?
A: If the encumbrance amount equals the full amount of the PO, then a payment has not been made to the vendor for this PO. If the encumbrance is less than the full PO amount, then a partial payment was made and there may be items or services yet to be invoiced.
Q: What if I need backup for something on my budget status report?
A: Simply contact the business office and supply the voucher, journal entry or Purchase Order number. We will then email, interoffice, or fax you the backup/invoice to answer your question.
Q: When do I use a purchase order compared to a check request?
A: Most of the time this works: If it's a vendor/company it should be on a Purchase Order and if it's a person it should be on a check request. Some exceptions to this would be if the vendor does not have a billing system (i.e. the Postmaster or if it's a donation). Please ask if you're not sure!
How you can help the Business Office, Departments, and Vendors
- Always use a current PO when doing business with a vendor
- Have the vendor reference the PO number on the invoice and have your department name referenced on the ship to address
- Direct all invoices to accounts payable
- Try not to reference first and last names on the invoice
If you need a PO to be paid within 2 weeks, please write the date in the space provided at the bottom of the form, near the budget number. We pay vendors once a week and if the PO misses that run it will be paid on the following run.
If you have any questions, suggestions, or comments, please contact the business office at 617-573-8405.