Published 15 Aug 2023
What is a Receiving Log?
A receiving log is a document that records what was delivered, when, and who received them. Sometimes called a receiving report or a receiving checklist, it’s usually filled out by a business’ receiving staff and later shared with the receiving team, the accounting team, and other managers.
In this article
- Why is it Important?
- Elements of a Receiving Log
- Try SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor)
- Featured Templates
Why is it Important?
Receiving logs are often used by warehouse or inventory managers to track the influx of goods coming in. Receiving logs function similarly to Goods Received Note or a delivery note. A major reason for using receiving logs is to ensure everything that was paid for arrived on time and in good condition, and that the amount and kind of incoming goods align with expectations.
Similarly, the receiving log can serve as a receipt or proof of a completed transaction between businesses. It can be used to help identify missing items or goods to be returned as the log will contain details of the products delivered. Missing items, in particular, may affect inventory management as they can cause a shortage in the inventory if not caught immediately. This could lead to wasted time and money as staff would become busy with making up for unexpected shortages.
In some cases, a business’ accounting department may also refer to the logs occasionally to ensure that paid items arrive, help compute past and future expenses, and examine if there should be changes made to their finances in order to accommodate their supplies. Receiving logs can also help in quality control as it can also document the conditions of the items received before they are stored in a warehouse. This way, damaged goods can be returned or disposed of easily, and additional purchases can be made if necessary.
Elements of a Receiving Log
A typical receiving log has the following elements:
- the date and time the delivery was received;
- who delivered the goods;
- mode of transportation used;
- the items received;
- how many of each time was received;
- proof of purchase or shipping;
- the condition of the items received; and
- the name of the person or people receiving the items.
For record-keeping, sometimes the head of the receiving staff may also be required to sign off the receiving log once it’s passed to them. There may also be other people required to sign, such as the person in charge of delivering the goods, so both parties are aware of the state of the items delivered.
In some cases, receiving logs can also be used as an incident report form. For this scenario, the log should include fields for the receiving staff to fill out for possible accidents that may have happened during transport or upon arrival, which can then be sent to the proper departments to be addressed.
Try SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor)
Most receiving logs are done with pen and paper, but today, it’s more advantageous to use a digital one instead. Using digital receiving logs would not only reduce paper waste, but it would also make conversations and record-keeping easier as it would keep all logs in one place, thus making work more efficient.
SafetyCulture offers free receiving log templates that can be accessed in one place. SafetyCulture is a mobile application that allows you and your receiving staff to record received deliveries using any mobile device. It also allows you to report issues and assign actions to be taken, both during and after receiving the items.
The templates available on SafetyCulture and in the Public Library can also be modified depending on your business needs. You can also activate scheduling to notify you of expected deliveries so that the assigned receiving staff will know when to expect them. Receiving logs are automatically saved in secure cloud storage which you can then view anytime you need them. You can also permit others to view the forms so they can have their own copies, eliminating the need for manual printing.
This log notes down both receiving and shipping conditions of the Groundup Eco-ventures, a Canadian upcycling company. They use this checklist to ensure all arriving materials are in good condition and were shipped safely.
Iron Will Raw is a pet food manufacturing company. They use this log to check the quality of their ingredients upon arrival and to know how to properly store them. This also lists down the temperature the packages came in, if there were any contaminants during shipping, and the overall shipping conditions before the shipment arrived.
This log is by Global Vegetarian Foods Corp, a vegan food company. This notes the dock’s conditions upon the shipments’ arrival if there were any incidents during transport and the conditions of the products’ labels.