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Re: Proposed changes to make it easier to ship after billing

Hi chris,

Answering the mail below has been on my list of things to do for a long time. I hope to clean out my backlog today.

> I am trying to figure out the best way to support easy shipping after billing.  The big problem right now is that unless and until we completely re-engineer both the invoice and order logic, getting a perfect solution in place is going to be a prohibitively large amount of work.  The basic point is that ideally unshipped orders should enter the system as orders, and only after they are shipped/delivered should they be invoiced.

Which is logical in some ways, because the meaning of an invoice is 'you owe me because...' with the list of reasons listed below. In case of goods delivery, it's hard to owe if nothing has happened yet.

> The ideal work flow accounting-wise would be:
> Web store Invoice -> LSMB order -> shipping -> invoice
> Web store payment -> LSMB payment attached to order -> merge with invoice -> close invoice.
> This can all be done correctly right now but it has a bunch of problems.  The first is that an overpayment is not tracked per order, making automatic attachment to an invoice problematic.  This makes doing everything in this workflow perfectly at the moment is going to be very labor intensive.

Attaching an overpayment to an order would indeed make a lot of sense here and would go a long way to making for a usable process, i would say. One of my main vendors uses a process like that: they send me the invoice after the shipment has been handed over to the shipping company. By that time i have long paid of course.

> What I am going to propose at the moment is something else, primarily because we are in the process of rewriting all related code anyway.  I would suggest that we provide an option to create a "shipping order" when an invoice is created.  The pro is that this workflow can be made to work and quickly.  The con is that it leads to the possibility of accounting adjustments at year-end in the case of backorders.  

I'm not very fond of this solution. Basically because it would be glueing solutions over old problems. In my opinion it would be better to see if we can create a workflow in the rewrite which automatically pays invoices from prepayments and - if there's enough demand - possibly to create shipments from orders and invoices from either orders or shipments.

> What do people think?

Summarizing the above, i think in the redesign, we should create the distinction between (fully) shipped orders and invoiced orders.

> Best Wishes,
> Chris Travers