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How to create a PDF e-Invoice

How to create a PDF e-Invoice

If your current software can generate PDFs in machine-readable format, you can use it to generate a PDF invoice. If the current software does not allow you to create PDFs, you can transform the invoice into PDF-format using a PDF creation software. When you create PDF invoices, you need to:

  1. Make sure the invoice meets the compliance requirements
  2. Make sure the invoice has the invoice layout and invoice types used in the setup phase
  3. Make sure the invoice is machine-readable
  4. Make sure the invoice is not secured
  5. Ensure that the attachment policy is followed

Once your PDF invoice meets the requirements above, you can send your first productive invoice.  

1. Make sure the invoice meets the compliance requirements

Countries have different legal requirements for the invoice content. Based on those requirements, selected invoice fields are set mandatory in the service. If any of such mandatory fields are missing from a sent invoice, Basware will not deliver the invoice to your customer but will reject the invoice back to the sender. The validation only governs the selected static fields per country and therefore customer remains liable for fulfilling any invoice content and compliance related requirements.

2. Make sure the invoice as the same invoice layout and type used in the setup phase

When you send in PDF invoices they need to have the same fields, language and content as the invoices provided to the invoice data testing in the setup phase. If changes are needed after the setup phase please contact Basware Customer Support. Changes are charged on a time and resource basis.

Each PDF invoice that you send to Service must:

  • Use PDF version 1.4 or newer.
  • Be machine-readable and searchable.
  • Be written in a supported language. Service currently supports the following languages: Danish, Dutch, English, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Norwegian.

3. Make sure the invoice is machine readable

Basware reads the invoices sent into the service electronically. Therefore, the PDF invoice cannot contain invoice data in image format. To check if the data is machine-readable:

  • Open the invoice you created.
  • Select one or more lines of invoice data using your mouse.
  • Copy the invoice data to clipboard.
  • Paste the invoice data into a word processing software, for example Notepad, TextEdit or WordPad.

If there are strange characters in the text please use a different font and create the invoice again. For more information, check out this other KB article, How to find out if your document is machine readable.

4.Make sure that the invoice is not secured.

Basware cannot process secured PDFs. Secured PDF does not only mean that PDF is password protected. Apart from PDF not being read protected, Basware also requires 'Content Copying' to be allowed for secure PDFs. Open the properties of the PDF document and check the security settings. Below screenshots describe the correct security settings and PDF versions accepted by Basware:

  • There should be no password security enabled to read the PDF document.
  • Content copying should be allowed.
  • PDF version should be 1.4 or newer.

If the PDF document does not meet the above mentioned settings, create the PDF again with suggested settings. It is likely that you can create machine-readable PDF invoices with your current software. If, however, you are unable to create PDF invoices, there are several free PDF tools available online that you can use to produce PDF invoices:

Disclaimer: The following list of tools is provided as example only, and solely for informational purposes. It is not meant to function as an endorsement for the products that the companies in question provide. Basware Corporation has no control over the development and distribution of any of the software products listed herein. Therefore, Basware Corporation assumes no responsibility or liability for any incidental or consequential damages caused by installing and using any of the software products listed herein.

  • CutePDF™
    • Writer Developer Acro Software
    • Operating System Microsoft®1 Windows
    • Website www.cutepdf.com
  • doPDF
    • Developer Softland
    • Operating System Microsoft Windows
    • Website www.dopdf.com
    • Microsoft Office Add-in: Microsoft
  • Save as PDF
    • Developer Microsoft
    • Operating System Microsoft Windows
    • Website www.microsoft.com

6 Ensure that the attachment policy is followed

Only PDF attachments are allowed. Any other kind of attachment is ignored. Change the name of the attachment so that it contains the word ''attachment'', for example ''attachment_112233.pdf''. If you send multiple attachments, we suggest to send one invoice per email.