7 Jun, 2021

All About NetSuite 2021.1 Release

Every year NetSuite releases two major upgrades to boost its functionalities. The 2021.1 release occurs in two phases with the initial phase beginning in February and the final phase ending in April 2021. This blog outlines all the major upgrades in the 2021.1 release.

Release Preview Accounts

NetSuite provides customers with Release Preview accounts to enable them to test and play with the new features while ensuring that they do not conflict with existing workflows and customizations. 

Every NetSuite account has access to these Release Preview Accounts. They are used to assess the new features and improvements that NetSuite introduces in version updates. Customers receive  Release Preview Accounts in batches, meaning some businesses are yet to avail it.

Module Upgrades in 2021.1 Release

NetSuite is revamping its modules with scope for more optimization. In its latest release, NetSuite is focusing on intelligence and automation on all major modules like finance, operations, inventory management, and project management.

NetSuite Financials

NetSuite introduced centralized subsidiary purchasing and billing to consolidate purchases across organizations with multiple subsidiaries and thus generate vendor payments from one location.

• Helps in reducing purchase order volume.
• Improved spend management and ROI.

The new budget validation functionality restricts overspending against the available budget by placing validations in purchase requests and orders. With SuiteApprovals - users can now view, approve and reject transactions through email. Financial data from several banks in Asia, Australia, and New Zealand is imported with the help of global bank feeds.


NetSuite features a Professional Services Automation (PSA) solution called SuiteProjects in the 2021.1 release. SuiteProjects clubs multiple capabilities in project management like resource management, project accounting, and budgeting. SuiteProject is capable of linking with NetSuite CRM, SuitePeople, and financials - making it a go-to platform for running services business seamlessly.

• Initiate purchases straight from projects.
• Restrict every expense line in a project.
• Review weekly timesheets before approval.

Inventory Management

NetSuite Pack Station

NetSuite Pack Station is a modern touchscreen packing solution that consolidates shipments, packs multiple cartons, and even manages multi-level packing, and scanning weights from scales. This adds an extra layer of verification before order delivery, potentially reducing consumer frustration and saving money on reshipping a wrongly packed order.

Add-ons in Warehouse Management System (WMS)

• Wave Automation - easily manage off-peak wave processing.
• Tally Scans - enhance picking by making bar code scans more agile.
• Cart Put-away, bulk pricing, automatic label printing.
• Order allocation by channel.
• Location assignments based on early availability and demand.

Platform and Analytics

Application Performance Management (APM)

NetSuite launched APM dashboards that monitor the performance of REST web services-based integrations.

• Native language support for SuiteAnalytics workbooks.
• Localized fields.
• Extends support for analytics development and automation.
• Secrets management - manage authentication data securely.

Checkout the latest changes NetSuite made in the following sectors.

1. NetSuite for Software Companies

NetSuite announced delta charges feature in SuiteBilling Global invoicing for software companies allowing them to generate delta changes for invoiced service dates. This ensures that invoices accurately show modifications to original invoice amounts, eliminating the need for credit memos and simplifying customer invoices.

Users can now review, approve, or reject transactions with a single email with SuiteApprovals email approval. The feature adds more flexibility and faster transaction approvals. Notably, the email approval log allows for analysis and auditing of those actions prior to any system changes.

2. NetSuite for Manufacturing Companies

The Supply Planning Workbench is now updated to provide date-based views, allowing the planner to view the planning results for an item and location over time to spot similar patterns. A new sorting parameter called "high impact late demand threshold," sends a color-coded message to the Supply Planning Workbench if late demand exceeds the company's demand thresholds.

Planning repository refreshes when automated can run during off-peak hours and relieve pressure on the device during peak periods. Planners can set conditions for the procedure to repeat at a certain interval, thus saving them time.

3. NetSuite for Retail

To avoid overselling or underselling by channels, it is possible to:

• Allocate Orders by Channel

With the new release, NetSuite-enabled channel allocation allows you to provide inventory for individual channels and prevent reserve inventory overselling or underselling before the sale order. All the information regarding the inventory management KPIs is presented in one place.

• Allocate Against a Blanket P0’

NetSuite introduced the ability to allocate against a blanket PO (Purchase Order). Blanket purchase orders provide an early alert for the vendor to ready the production process.

• First Expiry First Out (FEFO)

FEFO (First Expiry First Out) Lot Allocation allows multiple item inventory for FEFO based sales order line items. The SuiteApp arranges lot numbered items based on customer shelf requirements and minimum order fulfillment needs.

4. NetSuite for Distributors

NetSuite's latest release provides wholesale distributors with improved visibility and insights into their business to find growth opportunities.  It also enhances the agility and accuracy of the inventory and Warehouse. Its advanced metrics are capable of measuring growth and analyzing issues related to invoicing and payment processing.

The Warehouse management system functionality is capable of creating picking waves automatically to organize items by delivery time, address, and shipment numbers. The wave creation procedure when timed accordingly can reduce busy schedules. New enhancements include - tally scans, mobile status change, and automated label printing.  NetSuite also introduced a robust allocation feature enabling allocation of orders by channel as well as against a blanket PO following the FEFO (first expiry, first-out) rules. 

5. NetSuite for Service Companies

NetSuite’s SuiteProjects helps Service companies with improved automation. The new feature arrives with a set of in-built capabilities like Project budgeting, accounting, and resource management. The SuiteProject performs to its maximum when coupled with NetSuite’s CRM, financials, or SuitePeople.

Project purchase automation now allows project managers to wholly control the process - right from purchasing projects to transactions to route purchase approvals. This directly results in improved cooperation between two separate entities - purchasing and project management. With NetSuite, employees can alter their timesheets before approval, saving both employee’s and approver’s time.

Customizable mobile dashboards aid service companies in easily tracking and controlling their NetSuite data. It is possible to get a bird’s eye view of the entire process easy from a mobile device and customize it accordingly.

6. NetSuite for Non-Profit Organizations

Constituents that help bring in donations are now recognized with NetSuite’s new soft credit capabilities. The feature permits multiple constituents to be linked with the soft credit recipients on a given transaction allowing a nonprofit to precisely understand a constituent's overall impact of the contribution.

The latest fundraising reports make it easier to find donors who have given in the past but haven't yet given this year. It helps in generating a list of lapsed donors easily and reveals how frequently these lapsed donors' gifted previously.

7. NetSuite for Developers and Admins

The new Application Performance Management (APM) dashboards help administrators and developers to monitor and analyze the performance of REST web services-based integrations.


• Helps non-profits form overspending by comparing it with the available budget.

• More clarity into the financial aspects of the business with budgets, actuals, and commitments by grant or department. This will help in understanding how incurred expenses match with the available budget.

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