Import an Electronic Fuel File

To import an electronic fuel bill downloaded from your fuel provider, you will use the Tool: Incoming Invoice Wizard.  But, there are a number of steps to complete before you can download the file.

  1. You will want to create the following Payable Charge Types in System Configuration (See our How To document or watch the video on Charge Types)
  • Fuel – Gallons   
  • Fuel – Litres      

If you only purchase fuel in the US then you only need the Fuel – Gallons.  If you only purchase fuel in Canada then you only need the Fuel – Litres.  If, however, you purchase fuel in both and you receive your bill in both currencies and measurements, then you will need both payable charge types created

  • Cash Advance – Only if you allow your drivers to take cash advances on their fuel cards
  • Oil & Additives – Again, only if you allow your drivers to purchase oil and additives on fleet issued fuel cards.  These can be lumped together or they can be separate charge types.
  • Transaction Fee – If your fuel provider charges you a fee for each transaction.
  • Fuel Rebate – If your fuel provider gives you a rebate on purchases
  1. Ensure you have a vendor record created for your fuel vendor and ensure the vendor type is set as a: “Vendor: Fuel”
  1. Ensure you have all fuel card information recorded on the equipment record. All fuel cards should be accounted for and associated to a power unit.

  1. You will need to determine the fuel format that your fuel provider uses and download the bill from their website electronically and save it to your computer. The type of fuel format will vary from fuel vendor to fuel vendor but a typical one used by many of the fuel vendors is Extended Comma Delimited format. Once you have determined the format that your vendor uses and have saved it to somewhere on your computer, you are now ready to “import” the file directly into your Tailwind database.
  1. With your Tailwind program open and by navigating to the menu item: Tools – Incoming Invoice Wizard.

Click on the Fuel File button and a new window will open:

Here, in this window, you will choose the appropriate file type from the pull down and then also choose the fuel vendor from the Vendor pull down.

  1. In the middle of the above window you will see some settings. These signify the charge types that will be used to associate the expense to.  The first line which reads “Fuel Vendor” – this is where you choose the charge types created for fuel expense and Cash Advances, etc. The second and third lines which read “Company Driver” and “Owner Operator” – this is where you can set the chargebacks. If you do NOT charge the fuel back to the owner operator, then you would choose “**SKIP**” in that column. However, anything you would like to be created as a chargeback to either the Company Driver or the Owner Operator, needs to have the appropriate charge type selected in that column. Any chargeback created thru the importing of the electronic fuel bill will result in a bill being created for the Company Driver or Owner Operator and will populate into the “Driver Pay Wizard” enabling you to show the deductions on the Company Driver or Owner Operator statement.
  1. Once you have all the settings configured here, you then click the Import button in the bottom right hand corner. Choose the folder where you have saved the fuel file in and choose it.
  1. If there are fuel cards that have not been associated to a power unit yet, you will get a box that appears asking you to choose which power unit has the card in question. As stated in item number 3, fuel cards must be associated to a power unit so the fuel purchased can be associated to that power unit for chargeback and Fuel Tax purposes.

If, however,  you have entered all fuel cards on each piece of equipment, then the system will ask you which currency this fuel bill is in.  Choose the correct currency and the information will populate on the first page of the Incoming Invoice Wizard.

  1. Now you can choose next and work thru the fuel bill to ensure all purchases are accounted for.  By highlighting a specific line (as seen below) you can now audit the fuel bill line item by line item

  1. The main deduction tab will display the individual purchase on the left and whether this purchase is being charged back to an owner op on the right. 

  1. The Transaction Fee tab will display is there was a transaction fee for this individual purchase.  Not all fuel providers charge a transaction fee so it will simply show zero if no transaction fee.

  1. The Fuel / Service tab will display the power unit that purchased the fuel and the fuel location details and time.  This information will flow thru to the IFTA module
  1. Pay attention to the bottom right hand corner of the Incoming Invoice Wizard as you will want to ensure that all charges on the fuel file have been distributed.  You want the amount in the “Remaining” box to be at zero.  You may need to audit the bill to determine why there are remaining amounts.  These could be purchases that have not been accounted for (refer to Item 6 in this document) and you may need to manually enter that purchase or purchases and associate them to the expense charge type that you want and then by using the button “Add Line” until you get to zero dollars in the “Remaining” field.

  1. Once you have zero dollars in the remaining field, you can click “Next” and this will receive the fuel file into your database.
  1. In most situations, if you have created all the appropriate charge types and associated all the fuel cards to the power unit, you will have zero dollars remaining from the beginning.  However, there  may be times when there is something on your fuel bill that has not been accounted for and in these situations, you may be required to print a detailed copy of the fuel bill so you can determine why there are amounts remaining.
  1. Receiving an Electronic Fuel File will achieve the following:
  • A bill for your fuel provider will be received and posted and will show in the Vendor Pay module, allowing you to pay the bill when it is due
  • Any deductions created for owner operators or company drivers will be created and will flow thru to the Driver Pay Wizard and will appear on their statements as deductions.
  • All fuel purchase details will flow thru to the IFTA module allowing you to account for fuel purchased on your IFTA reports.
  • All fuel purchase details will flow thru to each power unit equipment record for display and historical purposes.