“We didn’t set out to build a Financial Management System (FMS). Our goal was to build a system to run the business.” – Zach Nelson – NetSuite ex-CEO

Time to read: 15 min

Drink Pairing: Viennois coffee

Standing ovation to Anderson Frank for the collaboration on this read

Authors: Vlad Olano & Luivir Rangel

When thinking of NetSuite ERP, picture a big clean canvas, where you can design basically any business process that you can imagine. The beauty of NetSuite in particular as an enterprise resource planning system is the number of native tools, the flexibility of coding & integrations available.

The system was built as a SaaS from the ground up. It’s a platform that contains different software modules that interact with each other. It depends on the business users, what the system will do and how it will do it. 

You’ll learn:

  • About the NetSuite SuiteCloud Platform
  • NetSuite Administrator Guide – Your first 12 months

NetSuite SuiteCloud Platform

SuiteCloud platform is designed to help analysts and technical developers interact with the system. It offers a wide range of APIs (Application Programming Interface) that can be used. Create powerful customizations, integrations, and extensions to build your dreamed ERP environment. 

Thanks to SuiteCloud you can customize almost every function in the system. Each tool is specialized in a particular area:

    • NetSuite SuiteBuilder: helps customize the user interface of NetSuite, easy prototype and deploy of applications.  
    • NetSuite SuiteAnalytics: measure company performance providing real-time data overview. Create custom reports and saved searches.
    • NetSuite SuiteFlow: supports teamwork and increase productivity by allowing to automate and customize your business operations.
    • SuiteScript: manipulate and extend predetermined functionality.
    • SuiteTalk Web services: connect and interact with third-party On-Premise/cloud apps with integrations. 
    • NetSuite SuiteBundler: implement or create your own customization bundles to productize your application or business processes.

Over the years, NS has become a flexible and user-friendly platform. However, some of these tools require core coding knowledge and a deep understanding of each function.

ProTip: every year NetSuite releases 2 major updates to ERP users. They notify the users of the new changes within the anticipation. Also, it allows them to test the features so they can become familiar with them. As consultants, we must know that these changes may affect the system configuration. It may lead to new customizations or processes that need to be updated.

NetSuite SuiteBuilder

SuiteBuilder allows users to customize the user interface using forms, fields, and records to support how you interact and implement individual business processes in the system. Responsible for the ERP structure, their “point and click” interface allows the possibility to personalize your environment with no code needed. 

Features:

    • Business process configuration: build any consideration needed for your company’s specific requirements. 
    • Data relationship and user Interface customization: database tables via custom records allow users to alter NS functions. You can easily manage single custom records or tie them together with standard objects like clients or items.
    • Dashboard personalization: the platform allows each user to have his own system, properly configured to the user’s specific responsibilities. Some of the configurations include job reminders, trend graphs, reports, and key performance indicators. 
    • Supported records and operations that can be built, added or customized.
    • Other custom tools:
      • Roles
      • Lists
      • Fields
      • Color Themes
      • Record renaming
      • Forms
      • Records / Objects
      • Centers
      • Tabs
      • Sub-tabs
      • Fields

Review SuiteBuilder guide to know each function in detail, how to take full advantage of it and best practices.

NetSuite Tools | Suite Builder

NetSuite SuiteAnalytics

Reports have never been this easy. SuiteAnalytics connects NetSuite data to help users understand the actual meaning of insights, from where the data comes and why. 

Users can build any kind of report or saved searches on SuiteAnalytics workbooks due to its drag and drop features. It brings access to real-time information and accurate data without needing additional programs or any extra cost. Yes, your IT team can chill now. 

Benefits:

  • Unified data source
  • Complete visualization over formatting, charting and layouts.
  • Easy to read insights.
  • Friendly interface, ready to use.

Features:

  • Multilevel company entity joins
  • Build queries on top of queries
  • Drag and drop editing and filtering
  • Full self-service reporting
  • Analytics on the go
  • Custom real-time dashboards
  • Dynamic data interaction
  • Instant previews
  • Key Performance Indicators

 

Protip: our team built an awesome cheat sheet to show you the essential saved searches for NetSuite Admin 🤓

NetSuite SuiteFlow

SuiteFlow provides NetSuite developers and users the ideal platform to automate and customize business operations. Operations like lead nurturing, sales discounting and purchase order approval are now a walk in the park.

SuiteFlow allows you to design and set up custom workflows to simplify processes, cut costs and avoid human mistakes. 

Benefits:

  • Speeds workflow implementation to respond to constantly changing business needs
  • Activates the continual tracking to improve the responsiveness in business operations.
  • Allows for expedient workflow changes to maximize business agility.

 

Features:

  • Specific trigger events that lead to a workflow, like schedule flows that run on a specific date automatically. 
  • Rules-based workflows to streamline business operations.
  • Defined conditional actions.
  • Graphic interface for workflow management. Create, view, edit and manage different workflow states, rules, branching and action conditions.

Developers know they can create very complex solutions. To get to know all the features and functions check out the SuiteFlow user guide.

NetSuite Tools | SuiteFlow

SuiteScript

NetSuite is by far the favorite ERP for any developer. Due to functions like SuiteScript, you can built on JavaScript the complete automation or customization needed in the software. By using the platform APIs, data can be manipulated via scripts to execute a predetermined event. 

SuiteScript has a variety of options to  allow complete control over system management and customization, such as:

  • SuiteScript IU: extension that allows you to build a “ghost” custom interface, runs invisibly in the original framework.
  • Suitelets: extension that brings the opportunity to host HTML or NetSuite based front-end development within the framework. 
  • Portlet SuiteScript: allows users to list any kind of content (native or external) on the dashboard.
  • Scheduled SuiteScript: simplifies business operations via JavaScript extensions, allowing records to be processed as a scheduled batch to automate workflows. 
  • User Event SuiteScript: Execution by record, ideal for business rules and data validation. While the user works with records and data, the scripts are triggered when a change is made.
  • Client SuiteScript: helps field-level calculations, business logic, and alerts which run within the user’s browser. Server SuiteScript APIs can be called on to apply business logic.

SuiteScript documentation is vital to perform a clean customization. Check out the 2.0 API Reference here.

NetSuite Tools | SuiteScript

SuiteTalk Web services

NetSuite ERP goal is to create a complete customizable and easy to use platform, and it’s getting close to it. NetSuite Web services (SuiteTalk) is the friendly way to set up and manage On-Premise or third-party integrations in NS. 

Benefits:

  • Easy integration platform across eCommerce, ERP, and CRM.
  • Supports third-party systems.
  • Masters data and real-time transactional integration.
  • Leverages existing skills like Java or Microsoft .NET.
  • Provides security and error handling designed to support core integrations.

 

Features: 

  • Standard-Based Integration
      • Integrates custom objects and standard native records to third-party apps.
      • Any development language supported by SOAP-based web services is allowed to enable integrations.
      • The platform uses RESTlet framework. It brings to developers the flexibility to set up their own procedures for standard functions.
  • Comprehensive Error Handling
      • Helps to ensure reliable integrations.
      • Automated validation based on the field type, also supports custom fields.
      • Provides exceptions per record.
  • Security model
    • Controls web requests under NetSuite encryption, authorization, authentication, and session management.
    • Operations can be restricted under access privileges.
    • Security is supported on a per-field basis.

Here are some NetSuite SuiteTalk examples if you wish to know more about the applications of this tool.

Supported Platforms

The system was created to hold every single business operation in a single solid structure. Check out some of the most popular platforms that we connect to NetSuite: 

  • Quickbooks
  • Salesforce
  • Sage ProvideX
  • MS SQL Server
  • IBM DB2
  • Proprietary Applications
  • Pervasive PSQL
  • Sybase
  • PostgreSQL
  • abas Open Object-Oriented Database
  • MS Access
  • IBM UniData/UniVerse
  • Multi-Tenant SaaS on the Force Cloud
  • Universally Compatible w/all Database Platforms

 

SuiteBundler

SuiteBundler allows NetSuite users to create bundles of anything needed. Packages their custom business processes and installs them repeatedly with just one single click. The technology allows VARs, SIs, and ISVs to productize solutions. Packages your work on SuiteBuilder, SuiteScript, and SuiteTalk to create a bundler that is easy to share with other company entities. 

If needed, complements your research by checking the SuiteCloud Platform introduction. You will find an expanded explanation of the customization and record reference tools mentioned above.NetSuite Tools - SuiteBundle

NetSuite Administrator Guide – Your first 12 months

We join the worldwide recruiter firm Anderson Frank to build the route that will guide you over your first 12 months. We’ll publish a brand core step every month to help make yourself THE NetSuite Admin. Join us on the ERP Academy and learn about industry best practices, insights and coming events. We’ll keep you posted when the next revision class is ready 😎

NetSuite Administrator Guide

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