What is the industry best practice for filing paper invoices?


The filing methodology will vary by organization depending on the accounting system, information flow processing and how or why they most often retrieve paper files. We have researched with our AP advisors who are directors or managers of AP departments about batch processing and filing. In general, it appears a process consists of:

    • Creating a distinct file folder for each batch with a batch stamp on the outside of the file.
    • Documenting on the batch stamp the preparation date, enter date, initials of the data entry person and initials of the 2nd data entry person verifying batch totals and re-keying certain data fields for accuracy.
    • File the vendor invoices in the batch alphabetically within the batch file. This type of practice might not be the best fit for your organization.


It seems the main driver on how to file paper invoices tends to be what vendor information is being retrieved for research purposes. This is also a good question that you can post to the Forums on the site to get feedback directly from your peers. Also, a book titled Accounts Payable: A Guide to Running an Efficient Department by Mary Ludwig (Schaeffer) provides some good tips on this subject and others. It's published byJohn Wiley & Sons. Also see Ask the Expert best practices FAQs.

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