Differentiates a Party and Customer

Hello friends, in AR (Account receivables ) or TCA ( Trading community architecture ) , we usually comes across two common terms, party and customer. though both link each other still there are always confusion, here i trying to sort out the difference, hope this will be helpful

Points differentiates a Party and Customer which is as follows


a) Prospective Customer and more relevant for CRM Purposes
b) No Business Transactions involved (Sales Order, Sales Invoice, Debit Memo, Credit Memo, Receipt etc.,)
c) A Party does not have account but have Sites
d) A Party can exist without Customer Record
e) A Party Record will not have record in following tables



a) A Customer which is used both in CRM as well as in OM,Financials or any other module.
Example (A Sales Order in OM or Invoice in Receivables cannot be created without creating a Customer record for the Party).
b) A Business Transaction like a Sales Order, Invoice,Debit Memo,Credit Memo,Receipt can be created.
c) A Customer will have account and as well as Sites.
d) A Party record is must to create a Customer Record linked through party_id.
e) A Customer Record will have records in following tables


with reference to party_id column.

Run the Party and Customer Diagnostic Report to know more about the table information.

Important Note:

For Example Party ‘A’ has ‘B’ and ‘C’ two Customer accounts and party ‘X’ has ‘Y’ and ‘Z’ two customer accounts. If you want to merge Customer Accounts ‘B’ and ‘C’ with ‘Y’ and ‘Z’, then first we need to perform Party merge and then perform the customer merge. It operates on the simple logic, First Parent records need to be merged before merging the child records


Shivmohan Purohit

7 thoughts on “Differentiates a Party and Customer

  1. Stop publish bullshit. TCA is a layered structure. Parties are at the bottom – most generic relationship entity. Customers lives higher and built on parties infrastructure. Customer is a party we have customer relationships with. So every customer IS a party. Your blog posts like this only confuses newbies. Write only on subject you is really expert on.


  2. Hi,

    A good and easy to understand presentation of party and customer differentiation.

    Useful for most of the people who work in oracle apps.

    Tnanks for the article.



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