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Project Record Creation within NetSuite

NetSuite has several important project management tools. This includes tracking time and costs and paying any vendors used in the project.

Understanding Projects

There are three tools you can use to manage projects in NetSuite.

  • The standard Projects functionality covers what most businesses need to manage projects associated with customers. The standard Projects tool is the subject of this post.
  • Businesses and non-profits who receive funding through grants may wish to use the Grant Custom Record instead. This provides additional tools that ensure compliance with the grant, such as tracking how the grant money is used.
  • Project managers or businesses needing advanced reporting beyond the standard Projects functionality may need to purchase the Advanced Projects or Project Management add-ons.

Creating a Project Record

The most common way to start a new project is through a Customer record.

  1. Go to the Customer record.
  2. Select Sales, then Projects, then New Project.
  3. Enter a Name for the project. Be descriptive to help distinguish this from other projects.
  4. Select the Status of the project.
  5. Enter a Date. The Date can be today's date, the date the project starts, the expected completion date, or any other date. It's good practice to consistently use the same dating convention for every project, such as always using the starting date.
  6. Go to the Relationships tab and enter any Project Contacts. These may be internal or external contacts.
  7. Go to the Communication tab and then the Files subtab. You can attach project files by clicking Attach File then choosing New.
  8. For any reimbursement billing, click the Address tab then the pencil icon on the right side of the address row. Enter any billing addresses.
  9. Save the project record.
  10. To retrieve the project record later, go to the Customer Record, select Sales, and select Projects. All Projects for that customer will appear.
Paying Vendors

A vendor might be the supplier of materials used in the project or an outside contractor used to complete a specialized portion of the project. The vendor tools allow these expenses to be allocated to the project and track the payments made to each vendor.

Creating Vendor Bills

A bill tracks the bills received from each vendor. For example, when a vendor mails an invoice, create a bill in NetSuite to allocate that invoice to the project. Expected bills based on an estimate or contract can also be entered.

To create a bill:
  1. Go to Transactions, then Payables, then Enter Bills.
  2. Choose a Vendor or enter a new one.
  3. Enter the bill date in the Date field. This is based on the date the bill was generated or received.
  4. Review the Due Date. This should fill in automatically if the vendor's payment terms are saved in the Vendor record. For example, if the vendor bills net 30, the Due Date will automatically fill in as 30 days after the bill date.
  5. Go to the Expenses and Items tab then the Expenses subtab. Select the proper expense account from the Chart of Accounts. This might be raw materials or contract labor.
  6. Enter the Amount.
  7. Enter a description.
  8. Select any additional classifications such as Department, Location, Class, or Custom Segment.
  9. Click Save.

Paying Vendors

There are two ways to pay vendors. One is to pay multiple bills at once. The other is to go to the specific bill to be paid.

To pay multiple bills:
  1. Go to Transactions, then Payables, then Pay Bills.
  2. Select the account to make the payment from.
  3. Enter the payment Date.
  4. Select the bills to be paid.
  5. Click Save.
  6. When the next screen loads, click Refresh. The Status should update and a Bill Payment number should appear. Click the Bill Payment number.
  7. Click Edit to review and add any necessary details.
To pay a specific bill:
  1. Go to Transactions, then Payables, then Enter Bills, then List.
  2. Find the bill to be paid and click View.
  3. Click Make Payment.
  4. The bill should appear as checked in the Apply list.
  5. Enter the check number in the Check field if applicable.
  6. Add Memos if needed.
  7. Click Save.

Writing Checks

You can also write checks to bypass the vendor bill process, or for payments to others such as employees and customers. Examples could include immediate payments to vendors instead of invoices to be paid later, customer refunds, or employee reimbursements.

  1. Go to Transactions, then Bank, then Write Checks.
  2. Select the Checking Account.
  3. Select the Payee or enter a new one.
  4. Skip the Amount field for now. It calculates based on the information entered in steps 8-12.
  5. Enter the Date.
  6. Check To Be Printed to print the check using NetSuite. If the check will be written separately (checkbook, bank bill pay, etc.), enter the check number and make sure To Be Printed is unchecked.
  7. Enter a Check Memo if needed.
  8. Go to the Expenses and Items tab and choose the appropriate expense account from the Account dropdown.
  9. Enter the Amount and optional Memo or Description.
  10. Select any additional segments.
  11. Click Add.
  12. Repeat steps 8-11 if the check covers multiple expenses.
  13. Click Save.

Reviewing Vendor Transactions

To view transactions with a Vendor:
  1. Open the Vendor record.
  2. Go to the Financial Tab, then Transactions.
  3. Use the provided filters if needed.

There are also a number of Accounts Payable reports in the Vendors/Payables option of the Reports menu.

  • A/P Aging shows outstanding bills in relation to their due date.
  • A/P Register breaks down all bills and payments by Vendor.
  • A/P History by Bill shows the records by the individual bill.
  • A/P History by Bill Payment shows the records by individual Bill Payment.

For more information on how NetSuite can help your business or if you're interested in making the switch to fully outsourced accounting, contact today.

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