ZUGFeRD: the future of invoicing

ZUGFeRD: the future of invoicing

About the Book

Did you know that there's a standard for invoices? This standard is called ZUGFeRD, and it combines best practices from the EDI world with the qualities of the PDF/A standard to introduce industrial-strength invoice processing without degrading the user experience for those who deal with invoices manually. The human-oriented representation using PDF and the machine-oriented EDI information stored within the PDF are the key strengths of ZUGFeRD.

This powerful combination has many benefits. It doesn’t matter whether you’re sending or receiving ZUGFeRD invoices: every party benefits. 

  • Sending ZUGFeRDinvoices saves time and money. From printing, envelopes and posting, only a single output format is required for customers who process invoices by manual or automated means. Payments are received in a timely, reliable way. SMBs can meet the requirements of large corporations without any agreement.
  • Receiving ZUGFeRD invoices enables companies to implement fully automatic, error-free Accounts Payable (AP) workflows. Mail clients can automatically detect incoming messageswith a ZUGFeRD attachment. Electronic banking services can be used to transfer invoices directly into payment orders.
  • All parties save on storage space and paper. When archiving, sharing or reproducing invoices,the cost of book keeping and auditing may be dramatically reduced, with fewer errors for senders and receivers. 

These are only the mosttrivial benefits. Imagine the positive effects on international trade if ZUGFeRD were adopted on a world-wide scale. World-wide implementation of the ZUGFeRD standard could yield financial, technical and operational benefits across the entire economy, regardless oforganization size or nationality.

In this book, you'll find a series of examples that explain step by step how to create ZUGFeRD invoices that conform to the Basic or the Comfort profile.

About the Author

iText Software
iText Software

iText® is one of the world's leading PDF libraries. It enables developers looking to enhance web- and other applications with dynamic PDF document generation and/or manipulation. iText has been around as free/open source software since 2000, offering the best documented, best performing and most feature rich open source PDF engine available in Java and C#.

Bruno Lowagie is the original developer of iText. He is the author of two "iText in Action" books published by Manning. He's the CEO of the iText Group.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • 1. ZUGFeRD: the core concepts
    • The Portable Document Format
      • PDF/A: long-term preservation of documents
      • PDF as a format for invoices
    • Electronic Data Interchange
      • Electronic Business eXtensible Markup Language
      • Uniform Business Language and the Core Components Library
      • The Cross Industry Invoice standard
      • Importance of the evolution of EDI standards
    • Zentraler User Guide des Forums elektronische Rechnung Deutschland
      • The ZUGFeRD Data Model
      • The ZUGFeRD Format
      • Bridging the Gap between SMBs and EDI
  • 2. Creating PDF/A files with iText
    • Creating a regular PDF file
    • Creating a Tagged PDF file
    • Creating a PDF/A-3 level B file
    • Creating a PDF/A-3 level A file
  • 3. A simple invoice database
    • Database diagram
    • Creating database POJOs
    • Creating a POJO factory
    • Testing the database
  • 4. Creating XML Invoices with iText
    • Interfaces for the Basic and Comfort profile
    • Getting and setting the data
      • Basic and Comfort profile
      • Basic profile
      • Comfort profile
    • Validation of the data
    • Creating an XML file with iText
  • 5. Creating PDF invoices (Basic profile)
    • Creating PDF from scratch
      • Adding the seller and buyer addresses
      • Adding invoice lines
      • Adding the totals
      • Adding the payment info
    • The final result
  • 6. Creating HTML invoices
    • An XSL for Comfort XMLs
    • Adding some simple CSS
    • Transforming XML to HTML using XSL and Java
  • 7. Creating PDF invoices (Comfort)
    • Converting XML to HTML, and HTML to PDF
    • The final result
  • Conclusion

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