Introduction to journals

Every financial transaction is represented by an accounting journal.

Each journal contains all the financial details of the transaction such as the tax date, account codes, debit and credit values. Every journal created is displayed on the general ledger, found under Reports > General Ledger.

Most journals in Brightpearl will be generated automatically as a reflection of an action carried out elsewhere - for example, invoicing a sale or receipting a payment from a customer.


Manual journals are used to make entries directly to the general ledger. These manual journals can also be saved as templates and used to post the journal again with the same or similar entries. 

It is also possible to edit or cancel a journal in Brightpearl. Learn more about adding manual journals, editing journals and canceling journals here.

If you are unsure about journals we recommend speaking with your bookkeeper or accountant.

Parts of a journal

A journal is made up of two sections: the journal header and the journal rows.


The journal header contains information that applies to the whole journal entry:

Field Description
Tax date The date the journal affects the accounts. It can be edited after the journal has been created


Date created The actual date and time the journal was posted. Also lists the staff member who posted the journal (either directly, or through performing the actual that prompted the journal to be created)


Date modified The date and time of the last time the journal was modifyed, whether through a system action or through a user's



The journal's currency

Date due

The journal's due date (used primarily for invoice journals, to populate reports)

Journal type

The journal's type - see below for a full list

VAT reconciled

Whether the journal is VAT reconciled, and if so, the date the VAT reconciliation was performed.

Exchange rate

The journal's exchange rate.


Any extra details or commentary.

While each journal row contains data specific to that row:

Field Description
Order ID

The order ID associated with the row. This can be different across multiple rows - for example if a single payment is allocated to multiple invoices.

Invoice ref

The invoice reference associated with the row.

Account The account code associated with the row, describing a single part of the transaction.
Base debit The debit value of the row in base currency.


Base credit The credit value of the row in base currency.


Debit The debit value of the row in the journal's currency


Credit The credit value of the row in the journal's currency


Project The project associated with the row



The channel associated with the row

Lead source

The lead source associated with the row

Tax code

The tax code associated with the row

Journal types

Every journal has a journal type which identifies what type of transaction it relates to.

ID Transaction Description
BP Bank payment Withdrawals made from the bank account not associated with a purchase order
BR Bank receipt Deposits made into the bank account not associated with a sales order
BT Bank transfer Money transferred between bank accounts
EX Expense claim

Approved employee expense claims

GO Goods-out Cost of goods sold journals created when goods-out notes are marked as shipped and when purchase price corrections are required
IA Inventory adjustment

Inventory adjustments to add or remove stock

JJ Manual journal Manually entered journals
LC Landed cost

Created when landed costs are allocated against inventory items which have already been received.

Landed costs will be included in PG journals where the allocation happened prior to receiving goods-in.

OB Opening balance An opening balance entry, typically created during implementation during a trial balance import
PC Purchase credit Created by receiving a credit against a purchase credit, or a vendor (supplier) quick credit is entered
PG Purchase goods-in Created by receiving or unreceiving goods-in on a purchase order
PI Purchase invoice Created by receiving a purchase invoice on a purchase order, or a vendor (supplier) quick bill is entered
PP Purchase payment Created when a payment or refund is made against a purchase order/credit or vendor (supplier) quick bill/credit
SC Sales credit Created when sales credit is credited, or a customer quick credit is entered
SG Sales goods-in Created when inventory is received on a sales credit
SI Sales invoice Created when a sales order is invoiced, or a customer quick invoice is entered
SR Sales receipt Created when a payment or refund is made against a sales order/credit or customer quick invoice/credit
VR VAT return Created when a VAT return is marked as reconciled to transfer the liability from the sales and purchase tax accounts into the VAT liability account
YE Year end Created when an accounting period is marked as closed to transfer the profit for the year into the balance sheet

Manual journals

A manual journal can be used to post adjustments directly to the general ledger. A manually entered journal always has the journal type JJ.

A manual journal must adhere to the following rules:

  • Must be in base currency - foreign currency banks cannot be selected
  • Cannot post to the 1100 accounts receivable/debtors control account or the 2100 accounts payable/creditors control account, as all entries to those codes must be associated with a contact
  • The sum of the debit values must equal the sum of the credit values

Manual journals should generally only be posted for non-operational transactions.

If you are unsure about journals and the entries you are making we recommend speaking with your bookkeeper or accountant.

Learn more about entering manual journals here.

Find and view journals

General ledger

All journals are listed in the general ledger, which can be accessed under Reports > General ledger. 

The most recently created journal is displayed at the top of the report. The filters can be used to search for journals with specific details or relating to a particular transaction. 

When the general ledger is exported, more detail on each journal row is provided.

Click on any journal ID on the general ledger to open and view the journal and journal history.

Look up a specific journal

The search and filters won't currently search by journal ID.

If you know the journal ID you need to view you can go via Accounting > Correction, enter the journal ID to view or edit the journal:


Through an order

If you need to see all journal entries associated with a specific order, you can enter the order and click on the order ID on the top left hand side of the page to go to the general ledger filtered by that order ID.



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