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I have a set of sales data. This data has information for orders confirmed on or before "x" date. But there is also a date for the delivery of the goods.

We are targeted each month not on orders placed, but orders delivered. So we are interested in, lets say for 15/08/2019, orders placed by that time that will be delivered in that month.

At the top of my document, I would like something like "Effective Date: dd/mm/yyyy".
This date will show data as it would have appeared at that time, unaffected by anything that has happened since. In this sense, it is almost like looking back in time to see what results would have been shown at that time.
The final result for that month is irrelevant, what is displayed is how the month appeared to be going at that moment in time.

So, I'm looking for a better term than "effective date" that implies that the user inputting the data is looking back in time. Almost like a "date of focus", but more time-travel-y. Effective isn't wrong, but just doesn't feel like enough.

I have tried looking up some terms but can't get the right word. If this makes any sense whatsoever, your help would be much appreciated!

  • I don't follow. Are you saying you want this report (which appears to be a listing of "orders placed, but not yet delivered") to include orders which were subsequently cancelled? On the grounds that on the actual report date (some date in the past) your Sales Ledger / accounting system couldn't have known those orders wouldn't proceed to full completion? – FumbleFingers Sep 6 '19 at 15:10
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    How about "Snapshot of dd/mm/yyyy"? – Weather Vane Sep 6 '19 at 16:04
  • Well, assuming that goods aren't delivered unless they are first sold, this isn't a typical sales report; it's a delivery report because, if I understand correctly, a sale made on or before 15 Aug 2019 (the "as at" date) wouldn't be included in this report if the goods were delivered after 31 August. Is that correct? Also, do you really mean delivered or shipped? – KannE Sep 6 '19 at 19:54
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    @FumbleFingers That's exactly right. Apologies for not making it clearer. Cancellation is a good point that I should have raised myself, as cancelled orders would be included as we would not have known at the time that it was to be cancelled in future. I think I've overcomplicated my question and could have provided a much simpler scenario instead of using my exact situation. I'm looking for words that mean something to the effect of "as it was at" [date]. Perhaps I just need "as at" [date]? – Rob Lattimore Sep 9 '19 at 8:12
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I like "snapshot" as well, which is what @WeatherVane said. While this usage doesn't appear in any dictionary I could find, I can attest that that term is used ⁠— metaphorically, if not idiomatically — in business to describe what you're describing.

That said, when I pull up reports at work that show what information we were showing on a particular past date, it'll say "today's date" followed by today's date and say "report date" followed by the date of the past date whose information is being reported on that report.

So, on report printouts themselves, it says "report date" for what you're describing, but if I were to myself explain it to someone, like a new employee I'm training, I might say, "This report is a snapshot of what we were showing as of the report date that appears at the top just under today's date." That's my company's jargon, though. You do it how you like, and that'll be become the jargon of yours.

If you don't like "report date" or "snapshot date," you might try "historical date." At a prior employer, that was the term they used on reports to differentiate that it was not the date the report was printed, like yesterday's if I printed it out yesterday, but rather a snapshot of what information was showing on that past date.

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I think cutoff date will give the sense that you want: It's a list of all orders that were submitted in time to have their expected delivery be within the current month. Orders beyond that point are cut off the list because their expected delivery date is too late.

  • If I understand the question correctly, then I also think you should add some explanatory text to the report about how this is everything that was expected to ship in the given month, as opposed to everything that actually shipped; but that's a design suggestion, not a question of word selection. – Hellion Sep 6 '19 at 17:09

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