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anand das (service)     30 August 2011

Purchase order vs work order

Whats difference between - Purchase Order & Work Order ?


 6 Replies

G.Janarthanan (Sr.Engineer)     30 August 2011

Purchase Order is mainly for purchasing a finished good, including material & service cost.

Work order is mainly issued for the services to be performed.

fetchflow (owner)     23 July 2013

A Purchase Order is the official document for all purchasing activities. The terms and conditions of the purchase order give legal protection to the initiating department and to the company. This order also provides legal reference and backup in disputes over shipping, quality, damage, etc.

Generally  work order or job order (sometimes job ticket or work ticket, as it often has some type of ticket attached) is an order received by an organization from a customer or client, or an order created internally within the organization. A work order may be for products or services.

sanjay kumar (BE/ LLM in Corporate Laws)     23 July 2013

Apart from what the two gentlemen have said, the difference is needed for accounting purposes also. Work-orders or Services are booked under separate Budget Head and Purchases are either booked in Capital Goods or Stores & Spares. If all instruments are called by one name, then accounting people wil have to segregate them in Purchases and Services which will be time consuming. So different terminology.

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Yousuf Zameer   08 May 2022

Work orders are documents that summarize the details of a particular task that must be done. Work orders include the person requesting the work, management authorization, the technician completing the work, and the deadline. They should detail the location of the work, instructions for the task, and the parts and tools required.

Computer software, such as UpKeep’s CMMS can help track, automate, and manage work tasks, making a previously paper-intensive process much more efficient. With good data management, work  software can provide directors with quality, error-free information in terms of cost, parts, and labor allocation.


Purchase orders provide the documentation that authorizes a company to buy goods and services from third-party vendors. It summarizes all the details about the purchase to help ensure both the business and supplier are in agreement about items purchased and payment terms.

Purchase orders include the name, quantity, and price of the items or services ordered. Specials, discounts, or other agreements should be outlined as well. Finally, a purchase order should specify the payment terms as well as expected delivery dates.

By assigning a unique PO number, a company can better track, manage and analyze its purchases over time. This data can help in negotiating better or different purchasing agreements with current or new vendors.

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