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A common situation in the business setting of an importer would be that their in-country customer would place an order, for which they have a "purchase order number" and this order would have a reference/order number at the importer's end. The importer would then place an order with the overseas supplier, for let's assume he uses the same reference/order number and the overseas supplier would have their own order number.

From an importer's perspective, is there an accepted way to distinguish these three (or possibly four) reference numbers by calling them specific words?

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closed as too localized by FumbleFingers, Carlo_R., tchrist, coleopterist, MετάEd Nov 26 '12 at 16:08

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Too Localised. The importer doesn't normally need to know or care about his supplier's order numbers further along the chain, but if he wants to get bogged down with it, supplier's reference should suffice. –  FumbleFingers Nov 25 '12 at 21:04
my question refers to the practical problem of importing electrical engineering goods for fluid and gas processing. These goods are produced by <20 worldwide manufacturers in 4 major economies that require the reference as follow up and are bought by large corporates, councils and governments that have the structure to require such numbers as well to pay invoices. This problem would therefore apply to all small western, eastern or 3rd world economies that use english as a business language. –  jdog Nov 25 '12 at 21:20
I think this is a "term of art" which must be referred to practitioners; it is quite possible that different terminology may be used in different industries and supply chains. –  StoneyB Nov 25 '12 at 23:54
@jdog: All that just sounds like more reasons why your requirement is highly specialised. But presumably you'll be using standard accounts software to manage the sales/purchase ledger - I'd have thought you'd just use whatever preconfigured field names they provide by default (supplier/customer reference is normally there in most systems I've worked with). –  FumbleFingers Nov 26 '12 at 0:44
@jdog Only others in your industry can answer such a question. –  coleopterist Nov 26 '12 at 7:15

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