Tips & Tricks: Document Date vs. Posting Date in AP Invoice Entry


Learn the latest tips on how to maintain accurate and consistent financial reporting. Are you searching to understand the difference between the document date and the posting date when entering invoices in your Accounts Payable (AP)? Although these dates may seem interchangeable, they serve specific functions essential in maintaining financial health. We will explore their critical distinctions in detail here and provide you with tips on how best to manage them effectively.

Document Date vs. Posting Date: Understanding the Distinction

  • Document Date: The date on the Invoice refers to when goods/services were received, thus representing when business activity took place.
  • Posting Date: This date determines when transactions are recorded in your accounting system and, thus, which fiscal period the expense appears on financial statements.

Learn more: Tutorial on AP in Sage 300


Why Both Dates Matter

  • Document Date: Accrual accounting plays a pivotal role in your financial statements by accurately representing when an expense was incurred, even if invoices come later.
  • Posting Date: Cash flow management and reporting are affected when expenses hit your books, affecting forecasts and budget tracking.


How to Address Disagreements Effectively

There may be instances in which the document date and posting date differ significantly; here are some possible causes:

  • Fiscal Period Closing: If an invoice arrives after its fiscal period has concluded, an alternative posting date might be used to ensure proper recording.
  • Early/Late Invoices: Sometimes, invoices arrive before or after the actual transaction. Use the document date for recording the expense but adjust the posting date if necessary for accurate financial reporting.

Learn more: Soothing your AP Pain Points



Tips for Reducing Discrepancies:

  1. Standardize Procedures: Establish clear guidelines for handling discrepancies within your AP team. This will ensure consistency and reduce errors.
  2. Communication is Key: Maintain open communication with vendors to minimize delays in invoice processing.
  3. Utilize System Features: Many accounting systems allow you to override dates on a case-by-case basis. Use this functionality judiciously with proper documentation.



Effective document date and posting date management is crucial for accurate and consistent financial reporting, cash flow management, and overall financial well-being. These tips and tricks will help organize your document management system and efficiently contribute to informed decision-making processes.

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BAASS Business Solutions customer-centric, collaborative approach has enabled us to expand our team and office locations throughout the years. BAASS has over 20 locations throughout Canada, the US and Caribbean. Our success has been built on a simple formula - deliver what we promise and build long-term win-win relationships.