QR codes in accounting

21.9.2016

In everyday life, we increasingly encounter the image full of black and white squares called the QR code. What does it mean and what is it for?

The QR code was developed by Denso Wave in 1994 in Japan to speed up and simplify the process of monitoring devices in production in the automotive industry. Then, the company offered the principle of the QR code, free of charge to the general public. A QR code can hold over 7 000 figures. Other than digits and letters, it can contain 8-bit data or kanji (a character system used for Japanese writing). A QR code consisting of a combination of letters and digits can contain more than 4 000 characters, and that is enough to be able to use it elsewhere other than “just” for monitoring devices in the automotive industry… For the purposes of invoices in accounting automation, these formats were standardized: The QR Payment, the QR Invoice or a combination of these formats: The QR Payment+F.

The QR Payment is a code for sharing payment information – the bank account, the variable symbol, the amount or other information related to the payment. Such a code allows the easy transfer of the payment parameters between mobile devices via the QR codes. The format can be used for a pre-payment order on a mobile device or to perform accounting of payments, without rewriting a single payment parameter manually. For detailed information on the format, visit: qr-platba.cz.

The QR Invoice contains accounting information such as: the tax registration document number, the date of issue, the type of document, the date of the taxable event, the date of the tax liability, the tax base and the individual tax rates, the payment amount, the currency, the order number, the VAT of the issuer and the recipient of the document and much more. This code is used to transfer the invoice data between business partners: the supplier and the customer. The code is marked with the QR Invoice description and it is a code without payment integration with the QR Payment (QR Invoice without integration). A complete listing of data that can be entered in the QR Invoice can be found here: qr-faktura.cz.

The QR Payment+F combines the data from the QR Payment with the data from the QR Invoice. This QR code contains both the payment and accounting data (Integration of the QR Invoice and the QR Payment) and is marked with the description: QR Payment+F. The purpose of this code is integrated, so that the invoice could contain only one QR code that is both functional for entering payments and booking invoices. Further details on the integrated code can be found on: qr-faktura.cz.

How to generate a QR code?
To create your own QR code, you can use online QR code generators. Thus, for example, you can create a simple QR code with your contact details or directly a QR Payment, which is used to automatically load the data into the payment order on a banking application directly on www.qr-platba.cz. According to our research, a QR code will soon be a part of the most significant Czech accounting programs.

Usually, the ERP system prints the QR code in all three forms, namely QR Payment, QR Invoice and QR Payment+F. The code is printed on the invoice so that it puts a special object on the print report, it can be inserted anywhere on the form to ensure an individual appearance of the invoice for each respective customer.

How to retrieve a QR code?
The QR code located, for example, on the card of a business partner and can be simply read by an app on your mobile phone. Likewise, you can use the QR code to retrieve the payment data required for the payment of invoices.

Within accounting programmes, we are used to reading the QR code with a reader/scanner, which is connected in parallel to the keyboard. An accountant, during the capturing of the invoice, presses a special button that tells the programme that the next entry will be the QR code and scans the code. The system automatically pre-fills all the data from the QR code, i.e. the invoice number, the due date, the date of taxable supply, the date of issue, the tax base and the amount of the tax, the variable symbol, the bank account, the text of the invoice. At the same time, the system can automatically perform checks on the dials and helps reduce manual data entry errors.




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