In the ever-changing world of accounting, efficiency and accuracy are paramount. The use of e-invoices has changed the way accounting is done, especially in Lithuania, where companies are constantly looking for ways to make their financial operations more efficient. In this article, we will look at how XML e-invoices can make accounting more efficient and how businesses can seamlessly exchange them.
What is an e-invoice?
XML is a structured data format that allows invoices to be submitted electronically. These e-invoices have the benefit of being easily integrated with accounting software, which significantly reduces manual data entry, errors and time-consuming invoice processing.
The e-invoicing exchange process: exports and imports
Businesses can exchange e-invoices efficiently both in Lithuania and internationally. The process consists of two main steps: exporting and importing e-invoices.
- Generating an invoice. Start by creating an invoice in your accounting system. Most modern accounting software in use provides XML e-invoice generation capabilities in Lithuania.
- The equivalent of an invoice. Ensure that the generated XML e-invoice complies with Lithuanian and international standards, e.g. Peppol network is suitable for international transactions.
- Sending an invoice. Send an e-invoice to your business partners through a variety of channels, including email, EDI (electronic data interchange) or via the Peppol network, which is designed for secure and standardised exchange of electronic documents across Europe.
- Receiving an invoice. When your business partner sends you an XML e-invoice, it is presented in a standardised format. You can receive it via email, EDI or Peppol.
- Data identification. Your accounting software "takes" the data from the XML e-invoice and automatically populates the record in your accounting system, e.g. serial number, dates, amounts and even lines. This reduces the need for manual data entry and significantly reduces the risk of errors.
- Verification and validation. Review the imported data for possible inaccuracies and compliance with local regulations. Gather approvals from responsible persons, if required, allocate costs - invoice can be paid.
Advantages of e-invoicing
- Simplified workflow. Working with e-invoices eliminates the need for manual data entry, making the accounting process much more efficient.
- Reducing errors. Structured data and automated processing minimise the likelihood of errors, ensuring accurate financial records.
- Compliance. By using the Peppol network for cross-border transactions, you ensure that you comply with international e-invoicing standards.
- Cost savings. Reducing paper use, printing and postage costs can lead to significant savings over time.
- Sustainability. Digitalisation is compatible with global efforts to reduce environmental impact, so contribute to this common goal by using e-invoicing.
E-invoices revolutionise the way an accountant works with primary accounting documents, offering a more efficient and accurate way of managing financial documents. By integrating the Peppol network, companies can also seamlessly exchange documents with their partners in EU countries. This is particularly relevant in the light of the new directive adopted by the European Commission (coming into force in 2028), which will oblige businesses to exchange e-invoices with foreign partners.