Migrating Data From Your Legacy System to NetSuite

By - October 20, 2015

When choosing a new customer relationship management (CRM) solution or enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution, it is inevitable that if you are an existing business, you will have data to migrate over. NetSuite provides a pre-built data mapping tool to facilitate the process from your legacy system to NetSuite.

One of the major benefits is that NetSuite provides one system for the entire company and companies. It allows for multi-subsidiary and multi-currency and other necessities in running a global business. Because NetSuite follows the software-as-a-service (SaaS) model, it grows with the company and decreases security and maintenance costs.

Many businesses run into the dilemma of keeping data in multiple system, most common, utilizing a system for CRM and another system for ERP. NetSuite allows for all data to be stored together. Duplicate data entry is eliminated and data integrity becomes better.

The process to move data from your legacy system to NetSuite is a clean process. Data can be extracted from your legacy system where it is then cleaned up, structured to meet the necessary mandatory fields and structure, and imported into NetSuite using NetSuite’s data mapping tool. NetSuite uses CSV files to map columns to appropriate fields using a pick list. This process allows for simplification of the import process that is easy to follow.

The process of data imports can more easily be broken down into three simple steps:

Step One: Identify data sources

It is important to understand where your data is coming from and what is the master data. Often, when using multiple systems where duplicate data entry is part of the business process, data integrity is challenged. Two systems may not hold the same data, or the data does not match.

Step two: Determine the import option

Two most common methods of importing data is through a CSV file format where a spreadsheet is imported into NetSuite or manual data entry, where the data is keyed into the system. Some businesses may choose to use a third-party tool to push data from one system to another.

Step three: Prepare for import

It is best practice to create a data migration plan where data sources, import sequence, testing dates where a test file is imported in sandbox, and import dates as well as estimates of the number of records are mapped out. This allows for any possible issues to be addressed prior to the import process. Looking at the data prior to the import date to determine what fields will be imported is also another common best practice.

Additional Best Practices

Prior to importing your data, it is important to scrub and cleanse the data. Import customer data and then their contacts. Addresses should also be broken out into various columns to meet the NetSuite requirement. Transaction level data is not recommended to be brought into NetSuite because of the heavy and potentially messy reconciliation process.

NetSuite suggests to migrate data in the following sequence:

  1. Classifications
  2. Chart of Accounts
  3. Employees
  4. Communication & Activities
  5. Relationships/ Entities
  6. Opening Balances
  7. Transactions

RSM has helped thousands of customers successfully go-live with their software implementation. For questions on implementing this specific functionality or for questions on any other topic related to NetSuite, please contact us at erp@rsmus.com or by phone at 855.437.7202.

By: Ana Oliveira Pinto – National NetSuite Solution Provider

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