Each Utility Invoice record consists of a number of fields, some entered or imported electronically and some calculated based on the entry values and pre-defined formulas. Subsequent invoices on the same account will contain the same fields so long as the tariff has not changed.
Invoices for different accounts, even with the same supplier, can be structured much differently from one another. The fields on any particular invoice come from three places:
Type 1 - Pre-Defined Invoice Fields
These are fields that are common to all Utility Invoices, provided automatically. They include:
|•||Billing Date - The date the invoice is issued. This can be left empty.|
|•||Due Date - The date payment is due, and when late payment penalties are triggered. This can be used to drive work flows and notifications but can also be left empty.|
|•||Total - The total invoiced value. Includes all current charges such as penalties, taxes, adjustments and anything else. A value should be entered, but it's not absolutely necessary (See Key Information - Total vs Calculated Total below.)|
|•||Notes - A text field for commentary. Normally used to explain adjustments, penalties or other unusual situations. Can be left empty.|
|•||Approved - A flag indicating payment status. False means the invoice has not yet been approved for payment. True indicates that an invoice has been checked and approved for payment.|
Type 2 - Tariff Invoice Fields
These fields are based on the tariff associated with the account. At the time of invoice entry, ManagingEnergy creates an invoice field for each tariff component. Complicated tariffs can contain 20 or 30 components meaning that each invoice record will contain many fields. ManagingEnergy does not impose any limit on the number of tariff components or invoice fields. The simplest possible invoice would contain two tariff invoice fields...one for a single meter reading and one for the Calculated Total, which is a value predicted by the tariff engine.
A complicated tariff does not necessarily mean more data entry. Most tariff invoice fields are constants or calculated values generated by the tariff engine.
Type 3 - Reading Group Invoice Fields
Within a tariff, a Reading Group is defined for each meter being invoiced. Three pre-defined fields are replicated for each meter Reading Group:
|•||Reading Start Date - The first day of the billing period. This is normally the same as the End Date for the same reading group|
|•||Reading End Date - The date the meter was read.|
|•||Estimated - A flag indicating reading quality. False means the meter was read, either by a person or some electronic means. True indicates that the reading was estimated by the utility company.|
Total vs Calculated Total
What's the difference? The Total is the entered value that appears on the invoice. The Calculated Total is generated by the tariff engine. The two are compared during invoice auditing, and if they are too far apart the invoice fails the validity test.
If the user chooses not to enter the Total, the validation is impossible. In that case ManagingEnergy simply transfers the Calculated Total value to the Total field so that related reports and other outputs will function properly.