# Days Payable Outstanding (DPO)

Days payable outstanding (DPO) is a ratio used to figure out how long it takes a company, on average, to pay its bills and invoices.

Days Payable Outstanding (DPO) is a financial metric used to measure the average amount of time a company takes to pay its suppliers. It plays an important role in a company’s overall cash flow management and credit risk management. By understanding the company’s DPO, investors and lenders can better assess the company’s ability to pay its obligations.

## What Is Days Payable Outstanding?

Days Payable Outstanding (DPO) is a financial metric used to measure the average amount of time a company takes to pay its suppliers. DPO is calculated by dividing the total amount of accounts payable (AP) for a given period, by the total cost of goods sold (COGS) for the same period, multiplied by the number of days in the period.

$$DPO = \frac{AP}{COGS} \times {Days}$$

For example, if a company has $50,000 in accounts payable and$100,000 in COGS for a period of 30 days, its DPO would be:

$$DPO = \frac{50,000}{100,000} \times {30} = 15 days$$

This means that the company takes an average of 15 days to pay its suppliers.

## Why Is Days Payable Outstanding Important?

Days Payable Outstanding is an important metric for several reasons. Firstly, it allows investors and lenders to better assess a company’s ability to pay its obligations. A higher DPO indicates that a company is taking longer to pay its suppliers, which could be a sign of financial distress. Conversely, a lower DPO indicates that a company is paying its suppliers faster, which could be a sign of financial strength.

Secondly, DPO is an important indicator of a company’s cash flow. A higher DPO means that a company is taking longer to pay its suppliers, which can result in cash flow problems. Conversely, a lower DPO indicates that a company is paying its suppliers faster, which can free up cash for other purposes.

Finally, DPO is a key indicator of a company’s credit risk. Companies with a higher DPO are more likely to be at risk of defaulting on their obligations, making them less attractive to investors and lenders.

## Factors That Affect Days Payable Outstanding

There are several factors that can affect a company’s Days Payable Outstanding. These include:

• Financial Strength: Companies with strong financials are more likely to have a lower DPO, as they are more likely to be able to pay their suppliers quickly.
• Supplier Terms: The terms of the agreement between the company and its suppliers can have a significant impact on the company’s DPO. For example, suppliers may offer discounts for early payment, which can incentivize the company to pay its suppliers faster.
• Accounts Receivable: The amount of accounts receivable can also have an impact on DPO. If a company is slow to collect payments from its customers, it may take longer to pay its suppliers.
• Discounts: Companies may also be able to negotiate discounts from their suppliers if they pay quicker. This could result in a lower DPO.

## How to Improve Days Payable Outstanding

There are several ways to improve Days Payable Outstanding. These include:

• Negotiate With Suppliers: Companies should negotiate with their suppliers to get better payment terms, such as longer payment periods or discounts for early payment.
• Manage Accounts Receivable: Companies should also strive to collect payments from their customers more quickly in order to free up cash to pay their suppliers.
• Improve Cash Flow: Companies should also look for ways to improve their cash flow, such as cutting costs or increasing sales.
• Use Technology: Companies should also consider using technology to streamline their accounts payable process. Automation can help companies pay their suppliers faster and more efficiently.

## Conclusion

Days Payable Outstanding (DPO) is an important financial metric used to measure the average amount of time a company takes to pay its suppliers. It is an important indicator of a company’s ability to pay its obligations, cash flow and credit risk. Companies should strive to improve their DPO by negotiating with suppliers, managing accounts receivable, improving cash flow and using technology. By doing so, they can ensure they are paying their suppliers quickly and efficiently.