Common questions answered

Peppol is quickly becoming a standard of choice for many governments and businesses within Europe and abroad. However, many companies still have questions about the basics of what it is, what are the benefits of using it, and how to implement it.

If this sounds like you, then continue reading to find the answers to your questions. If you don’t find the answer, then feel free to reach out to us and we can answer any specific questions you may have. 

  

PEPPOL is basically an interoperability infrastructure, co-funded by the European Commission and 18 government agencies, to simplify the purchase-to-pay process between government bodies, and B2B Companies (buyers and suppliers). 

In simple terms, PEPPOL offers a standardised messaging connection for e-ordering, e-invoicing, electronic credit notes and advanced shipping notifications (ASNs). These technologies automate the information exchange across the supply chain, reducing the cost and potential risk of errors from manual intervention. 

The Peppol network is an open, many-to-many platform, with standardization on all three necessary levels:

  1. addressing and routing of the messages
  2. document specifications and
  3. network infrastructure


Peppol network

There are many benefits to using Peppol. You will save time and money by enabling your business messaging to be exchanged digitally, rather than on paper. You can easily connect to other trading partners who are also using Peppol.You will also reduce the amount of errors. 

One important note is that within Europe, many governments are now requiring e-invoicing when sending invoices to governments. Peppol allows your business to be compliant with these new regulations.

Connecting to the PEPPOL Transport Infrastructure takes place using Access Points (operated by Access Point providers, e.g. OpusCapita is one Access Point Service Provider) in a similar way to how sending and receiving email requires access to an Internet mail server (provided by Internet Mail Service Providers). 

The basic operations of an Access Point are:

  1. The sender of an electronic document (for example an eInvoice, an eOrder or an eCatalogue) sends the document to a PEPPOL Access Point using mechanisms agreed with their Access Point provider. 
  2. The Access Point identifies the service required (and may validate the type of document being sent) and also identifies the Access Point for the recipient. 
  3. The Access Point delivers the document to the recipient's Access Point. 
  4. The receiving Access Point delivers the document to the recipient.

OpusCapita customers typically get the service as part of our existing Services (E-invoice sending, E-invoice receiving, B2B integration) and use the OpusCapita Access Point to exchange documents with business partners using other Access Point providers. So the PEPPOL Transport Infrastructure can be considered to provide a ‘gateway’ or ‘bridge’ between specific eProcurement communities or service platforms. Peppol calls this federated network of Access Points connected to each other, the PEPPOL community.

PEPPOL divides its business process into the pre-award and post-award sets. Access Points need to support one or more of the PEPPOL post-award business processes (pre-award processes are optional).

These processes are specified in documents called Business Interoperability Specifications (BISs). OpusCapita supports the following documents:

  • PEPPOL BIS 1A Catalogue Only
  • PEPPOL BIS 3A Order Only
  • PEPPOL BIS 4A Invoice
  • PEPPOL BIS 5A Billing
  • PEPPOL BIS 28A Ordering
  • PEPPOL BIS 30A Despatch Advice
  • PEPPOL BIS 36A Message Level Response

Yes, OpusCapita has a certified Access Point regarding both Outbound and Inbound document flows.

Peppol Access Point

PEPPOL receivers and senders are identified using a combination of an ISO6523 identifiers (what type of identifier is used) and the corresponding identifier value. 

If your company receives documents, e.g. Invoices through Peppol, you have to inform your Supplier the correct identifier. If you are sending documents through Peppol you have to know your business partner Peppol identification and add your own identifier to your business document.

Yes. you can exchange business documents internationally using a Peppol Access Point provider. The only condition would be that your business partner is connected to a Peppol AP as the receiving company and you know their Peppol identification number. Peppol identification numbers in different countries are different – organisation IDs, VAT IDs, Public sector IDs etc. 

In order to use Peppol capabilities, you need to contact your Access point, for example OpusCapita. If you already have an  e-Invoice sending or receiving service activated with OpusCapita, then activating Peppol capability on top of that is very easy.

Your customers and suppliers should be aware that your PEPPOL Access Point exists and supports their business processes and that this allows them access to eProcurement across Europe. You should also ask if those business partners have a certified access point –service available and what business document types they are supporting.  

Your suppliers and customers will have to adapt their internal business processes and related systems to support the data flows of the PEPPOL business processes. Typically your Access Point provider can help your business partners to do the integration with the Peppol Network. 

Currently the coverage in European countries is increasing heavily and just recently Poland announced that they will start using Peppol in Public sector eProcurement. Also, several Access Points are operating globally and they can channel the business documents regardless of where the Supplier or Buyer has operations.

These are the current countries in which the Public sector has kicked off Peppol: 

  • Norway
  • Sweden
  • Denmark – DIGST
  • Netherlands – SimplerInvoicing
  • UK/Healthcare – NHS
  • Belgium – Fedict
  • Finland
  • Austria

Learn more about how OpusCapita can help you gain the benefits of the Peppol Network.

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