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How Does the NetSuite Sales Order to Invoice Process Work?

By Angelica L. Cox

How does a sales order turn into an invoice in NetSuite?

These (and similar questions) are often asked by business owners, managers, and NetSuite developers alike.

In this article, we will share everything you need to know about NetSuite’s sales order and invoice process, including 4 types of sales order forms you should be familiar with.

What is a Sales Order?

A sales order (SO) is an order issued by a business to a customer.

It is an internal document generated by the company. The SO is created upon receiving a purchase order from the customer specifying the details about the product or service they wish to purchase.

A SO should include the customer’s originating purchase order. A single SO can contain multiple purchase orders.

Further, a SO has no accounting impact until items have been shipped or services have been rendered.

It is a non-posting transaction with no effect on the general ledger (GL) since the sales revenues have not yet occurred.

After the items listed on the SO have shipped, the SO can be turned into an invoice or a cash sale document.

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4 Types of Sales Order Forms

A new SO in NetSuite can be created from an existing estimate, or entirely from scratch.

You can use one of the following forms:

1. Standard Sales Order.

A standard SO allows you to create either a Cash Sale or Invoice based on the payment method or billing terms specified in the purchase order.

2. Standard Sales Order - Cash Sale.

This type of form creates a cash sale.

3. Standard Sales Order - Invoice.

This type of form generates an invoice.

4. Standard Sales Order - Progress Billing.

This type of form is used in situations when a recurring billing plan is in place.

6 Types of NetSuite Sales Order Statuses

You can check the status of your SO at any point inside the NetSuite interface.

There are 6 types of SO statuses you may encounter:

  • Closed. The order cannot be fulfilled or billed.
  • Pending Approval. The order has not been approved by the appropriate parties.
  • Pending Fulfilment. A Cash Sale or Invoice document needs to be created. The order status can be reset to “Pending Approval" if necessary.
  • Billed. The order has been shipped or billed.
  • Partially Fulfilled. Some items on the SO have shipped. The order status can no longer be changed to “Pending Approval.”
  • Canceled. The order has been canceled. If you need to renew the order, you will need to create a new sales order document.

Keep in mind that you cannot include a partially processed order when fulfilling multiple orders.

Partially processed orders must be fulfilled individually.

How Does the NetSuite Sales Order to Invoice Process Work?

How to enter a sales order:

Go to Transactions > Sales > Enter Sales Orders

How to approve a sales order:

Go to Transactions > Sales > Approve Sales Orders

You can check the box in the “Approve” column or go inside each order and click on the individual “Approve” button.

How to re-approve a sales order:

You may require re-approval when someone edits a previously approved SO.

In order to enable re-approval, go to Setup > Accounting > Preferences > Accounting Preferences.

Click on the Order Management Subtab. Go to the “Edit Sales Order” box.

Check the “Require Re-approval” box. Save your preferences before leaving.

How to close a sales order:

You can use the “Close Order” button to close the entire order.

You can also go to the “Items” sub-tab of the SO and close individual line items by checking the box in the “Closed” column.

How to bill a sales order:

Go to Transactions > Sales > Invoice Sales Orders

Billing will turn an approved SO into an Invoice or Cash Sale.

How Verenia CPQ Can Help

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It’s the highest-rated CPQ currently on the market - and for a good reason.

Our CPQ’s modern, user-friendly interface has helped our clients nearly eliminate their sales rep training costs and reduce quote and order errors by 93%.

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They no longer have to spend hours digging through product catalogs or complicated Excel spreadsheets to configure and quote a product.

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They can create beautiful, polished proposals with just a click of a button - without ever leaving the NetSuite interface.

No more outdated invoice documents in sight!

As a result, we have helped our clients boost their conversion rates by 19%, increase the average proposal volume by 48%, and improve their average deal size by an astounding 105%.

Your Next Steps

Want to see Verenia CPQ in action?

Schedule a free demo now.

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