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Basics of the ABM Sales & Purchase ledger

by | May 31, 2019 | ABM - Advanced Business Manager, Ledgers, Product & Module Overviews, Purchases, Sales

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What are the Sales and Purchase ledgers?

As a high-end comprehensive accounting software, Advanced Business Manager(ABM) to no surprise presents to its users the ability to manage all manner of conventional business transactions through it’s Sales and Purchase ledger features. Governing the three main processes of Orders, Deliveries, and Invoicing(plus receipts/payments) for both Customer and Supplier transactions, this module – although only a fraction of the systems overall utility – serves as an integral part of ABM’s numerous Core Elements.  

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The fundamental trio: Order, Delivery, Invoice.

Generating a (suppliers/customers) Order

This guide will assume that the initial set-up tasks for your ABM system – such as creation of the customers/suppliers/products list, including all necessary details – have been completed and you are now ready to begin conducting business.

In light of those prerequisites, the first step is to buy in stock for sale to customers via a Purchase Order.

To begin, navigate to the Purchase Orders management window by selecting the ‘Suppliers’ button located in the left side menu list and then choosing ‘Purchase Orders’ from the drop-down. This takes you the Purchase Orders management window. By default it will display a record of all the Purchase Orders that have been made by a company. Here, a multitude of options are available; such as customising the viewing window to show whatever records and details are wanted, as well as generating Delivery and Invoice dockets. 

What we’re currently interested in however, is the ‘Add New’ button situated on the top bar. (Fig.1)  

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After selecting the ‘Add New’ button, you will be presented with the ‘New Purchase Order’ window(Fig.2).

*It should be noted that all the transactions to be discussed – sales orders, deliveries(sales/purchase), invoices(sales/purchase), etc – all share the same user interface structure; albeit with some slight variation such as which tabs are present and require filling out. These will be addressed as appropriate*

For the Sales Order side, the above process is much the same: follow Customers -> Sales Orders -> Add New.

The Order Header/Customer

As seen on the right, the process starts in the ‘Header’ tab(‘Customers’ for Sales). The system does not allow progress away from this initial tab until the mandatory field has been completed, therefore the first thing to do here is designate a Supplier/Customer Code.

The Supplier/Customer Code is something attributed to a specific supplier/customer, chosen from a list brought up by a new window(Fig.3) and should have been completed in the prior set-up. Supplier/customer details will be automatically filled in when a valid code is received. Next, enter a Supplier’s Reference/Customer’s Order No. and a VAT number.

Other important fields are:

  • All Prices: Decide whether to include or exclude VAT.
  • ‘VAT Applies’ tick box: for applying VAT or not.
  • Call Number: For use in conjunction with ABM Service Manager, to connect an Order with a Call entry.
  • ‘Suggest Order’ button: The ABM system will take a scan of the current stock levels and suggest an order list for that supplier. E.g: topping up on low quantities for a product.


  • *’Sales Discount %’: Applicable only in Sales . Set a sales discount for a particular line item.
  • *’Analysis Code’: Applicable only in Sales. Used for reporting with the Sales Analysis function and commissions. The full purpose will not be explained here.

Product Item

Moving on to the ‘Product Item’ tab(Fig.4), the first field to complete is to choose the products to be ordered via their Product Code. Similarly to selecting the Supplier/Customer Code above, this can be done through a list in a new window or by typing the Product Code manually, and doing so will pull down all accompanying information -such as location and description – as well. To enter more than one product, use the ‘Next Item’ button. The rest of the fields shown in the screenshot should be filled in also, and require no additional explanation. Instructions for this tab and the next four are true as well for Sales Orders.

Text Item

The ‘Text Item’ tab is there to provide a space for an unlimited product description of greater, additional detail if required.(Fig.5)

Ledger Item

The ‘Ledger Item’ tab is for entering a copy of the Purchase Order into a previous established Ledger Account. The main field here is of course ‘Account Code’ where the ledger account is specified. As seen before, the usual VAT related field exist also as well as Description and Quantity Ordered.(Fig.6)

Job Item

This tab allows the user to link the current Purchase Order to a job created within the Jobs module of ABM; done by indicating the ‘Job Code’ and the ‘Stage’ which the Purchase Order applies to. Once again, standard VAT fields and other apply.(Fig.7)

Deliver To

The destination address for the Purchase Order is inputted here.

*Deposit(Sales Only)

Like the label infers, deposits for orders can be made here. Choose between different payment types and bank accounts.

*CRM(Sales Only)

Links the transactions to a CRM campaign. By default not active as it is an Optional Module. 

Lastly when all the details that need to be filled in have been completed, select ‘Save & Close’ at the top to finish the Sales/Purchase Order. Be mindful that not everything needs to be filled in; only what is necessary for the order. A record of the transaction should now be visible back on the main interface.

Delivering an order

Delivering an order can be done from either the Sales/Purchase orders screen itself, or from their respective Deliveries & Returns screen; the latter being accessible by simply selecting the ‘Deliveries & Returns’ link situated below Sales/Purchase Orders. 

In this guide, we will focus on the first method. It starts by going to the same Sales/Purchase Order main records list where the orders were originally raised, and then selecting the ‘Delivery’ button at the top when highlighting the intended order. (Fig.8)


When that is done, you will be see a familiar window pop up. As mentioned before, it very much resembles the one for generating the Sales/Purchase Order; with mostly the same tabs and fields. The first course of action is to provide a Delivery Number/Customer’s Order No. to the field labelled as such, found on the right.

*Serial numbers

Next, move over to the ‘Product Item’ tab to set the quantity for the products to be delivered. Note that, provided the specific product group uses them, Serial Numbers will have to be assigned to products when you first increment the quantity to a number above zero; done with a button ‘Serial Numbers’  next to ‘Cancel item’. The button will bring up a box that allows users to enter serial numbers given by a supplier or create them on-the-fly for immediate use. Fig.8.1.

For a single serial number, after typing it into the ‘First Serial Number’ field  use a value of “1” in the ‘Number in Sequence’ field. For more than one of unrelated numbers just repeat the above with each number. Naturally if there is a group with sequential numbers use ‘Number in Sequence’ to match how many there are. 

Be sure to check over the details in the other tabs too.

*Freight Charges(Purchase only)

Different from the Sales side, we have this extra tab as an option(Fig.9).  It lets you specify how to handle the cost of delivery itself; covering details like the total amount(freight amount), VAT, how the cost affects products based on weight/quantity/value, and whether the charges are included with a product or handled separately. The default is an amount of zero that is set to be included. Any changes to this will be shown on a new line within the invoice record. 

In closing, select ‘Save & Close’ at the top to complete the Delivery. 

Invoicing a delivery

Just like with making a delivery, creating an invoice can be done from several places due to the multi-access aspect of the system. In this example we will focus on the adding a new entry via the ‘Invoices & Credits’ main screen. The difference between the method outlined above in the ‘Delivering an Order’ instructions and this one can be best described as follows: in the former the new Delivery Order is being created from an existing Sales/Purchase Order, whereas in the latter the invoice is initially made blank and requires you to input the details of the delivery that it applies to. The outlined difference will be made apparent ahead. As mentioned earlier, both ways are valid and ultimately it is down to personal preference to which one is used. How to reach the ‘Add New’ function for supplier invoices is shown to the right(Fig.10), and can be mirrored for sales.


Clicking ‘Add New’ brings the usual transactions creation/editing window(Fig.11). From there, to allocate this invoice to a particular delivery you first pick out the related supplier/customer via the ‘Supplier/Customer Code’ box (labelled 1).

Next, go to ‘Our Order Number’ on the right(labelled 2). This opens the order selection window(Fig.12); showing a list of the available orders under that supplier/customer along with other information.

After that, you will be brought back to the initial ‘Sales/Purchase Invoice’ window(Fig.11) where you’ll need to provide an ‘Invoice Number'(labelled 3) as well as data for the rest of the fields where necessary. The details of the chosen delivery will be displayed in the bottom table for overview. 

Product Item

As with the previous two transactions, the task here is to confirms the details for the products involved; which typically means going over each one to make sure the correct quantity is being Invoiced.

*Payment(Sales Only)

Has an identical layout to the ‘Deposit’ box during a Sales Order. Resolve an invoice immediately, make a partial payment, or leave blank to raise a receipt later.

Finally, go to ‘Save & Close’ to finish the invoice.

Resolving a Sales/Purchase Invoice

The very last step in the a transaction is of course the movement of money from buyer to seller, and once more, the method to do so is purposely consistent between both sales and purchase. Such is the beauty of ABM’s interface design.

The correct procedure to set up the receipt/payment functions for customers/suppliers(Fig.13) consists of:

  • Choosing the desired ledger(1)
  • Highlighting the desired supplier/customer(2)
  • Selecting the Receipt/Payment function in the top right(3)

The resulting action box will then ask for the details about the receipt/payment you wish to enter. It is possible to target a specific transaction by using the ‘select paid items'(Fig.14)/’select items to pay’ button,  but note that for receipts you must enter an amount paid.

Clicking the button brings up the debt selection window(Fig.15) where among other actions you can use ‘Offset this debt’ to resolve the highlighted transaction.

Select ‘Close’ afterwards to go back to the previous details screen where final completion of the receipts/payments process is achieved with ‘Save & Close’ at the top.

This concludes our look at some of the basics of ABM’s Sales and Purchase ledgers. But we’re still only just scratching the surface of what ABM is truly capable of; the system provides a user with an expansive array of options in its operation, covering as many scenarios and preferences it possibly can.

Stay tuned for our follow-up article exploring some of these options, where we take a look at various other nuances and functions available in the same Sales/Purchase ledger!

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