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Background documentationAccounts Receivable and Accounts Payable: Overview Locate this document in the navigation structure


The Accounts Payable application component records and administers accounting data for all vendors. It is also an integral part of the purchasing system, where deliveries and invoices are managed according to vendors. The system automatically makes postings in response to the operative transactions. In the same way, the system supplies the Cash Management application component with figures from invoices in order to optimize liquidity planning.

Payables are paid with the payment program. The payment program supports all standard payment methods (such as checks and transfers) in printed form as well as in electronic form (data medium exchange on disk and electronic data interchange). This program also covers country-specific payment methods.

If necessary, dunning notices can be created for outstanding receivables (for example, to receive payment for a credit memo). The dunning program supports this function.

Postings made in Accounts Payable are simultaneously recorded in the General Ledger where different G/L accounts are updated based on the transaction involved (such as payables and down payments). The system contains due date forecasts and other standard reports that you can use to help you monitor open items.

You can configure balance confirmations, account statements, and other notifications to suit your correspondence requirements. There are balance lists, journals, balance audit trails and other evaluations available for documenting transactions in Accounts Payable.

The Accounts Receivable application component records and administers accounting data of all customers. It is also an integral part of sales management.

All postings in Accounts Receivable are also recorded directly in the General Ledger. Different G/L accounts are updated depending on the transaction involved (for example, receivables, down payments, and bills of exchange). The system contains a range of tools that you can use to monitor open items, such as account analyses, alarm reports, due date lists, and a flexible dunning program. The correspondence linked to these tools can be individually formulated to suit your requirements. This is also the case for payment notices, balance confirmations, account statements, and interest calculations Incoming payments can be assigned to due receivables using user-friendly screen functions or by electronic means such as EDI and data telecommunication.

The payment program can automatically carry out direct debiting and down payments.

There is a range of tools available for documenting the transactions that occur in Accounts Receivable, including balance lists, journals, balance audit trails, and other standard reports. When drawing up financial statements, the items in foreign currency are revalued, customers who are also vendors are listed, and the balances on the accounts are sorted according to remaining life.

Accounts Receivable is not merely a basis for adequate and orderly accounting. It also provides the data required for effective credit management, (as a result of its close integration with the Sales and Distribution component), as well as important information for the optimization of liquidity planning, (through its link to Cash Management).

To process receivables-related Dispute Cases, for example payment reductions, you can use the SAP Dispute Management component. For additional information, see SAP Dispute Management for FI-AR (FIN-FSCM-DM).

You can use the SAP Collections Management component for the collection of receivables. For more information, see SAP Collections Management (FIN-FSCM-COL).

Note Note

SAP Dispute Management and SAP Collections Management are both part of SAP ERP, but a separate license is required for them.

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