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How to Leverage NetSuite Purchase Order Allocation Features

By Citrin Cooperman Digital Services Practice .

Importers bringing in products from overseas often need to allocate product, whether that be to an open NetSuite purchase order or on a container to a new sales order that comes in. As a result, they can match supply and demand. Businesses can also provide customers with specific dates as to when products will be available to fulfill orders.

Previously, NetSuite only provided cursory commitment functionality, as can be seen in the screenshot below of the preference for commitments. In this scenario, a product could only be committed to sales orders once it was received at a location. Then, it follows one of the rules below, such as commit by order priority, expected ship date, or transaction date.


NetSuite purchase order allocation functionality

The last few releases of NetSuite introduced new functionality to allow an end user to allocate products from an open NetSuite purchase order, transfer order, work order, or inbound shipment (future inventory) to a sales order as they are placed. NetSuite adds a new record called “Order Allocation Strategy.” This defines the allocation rules that the system follows when a sales order is entered for this item. The allocation strategy is selected on the sales order transaction line and determines the allocation logic. The available options for the strategy record can be seen in the screenshot below. This includes the types of future transactions to include, when to best allocate inventory (now or closer to when the customer requests it), and whether the allocation is soft or firm.


Once a NetSuite purchase order is entered, the system allocates according to these rules. It will consider available inventory in stock and the transactions outlined above to allocate future inventory to the sales order.

NetSuite-Allocate-Inventory (1)

After the allocation is created, the user can either manually review or run an automated process to review the commitments. Then, they can reallocate orders according to various criteria. This can include the quantity on the order, the quantity fulfilled already, and a few other options to determine which orders to prioritize and allocate inventory against.

NetSuite-Allocation-Review (1)

Finally, end users may need to commit specific quantities against specific orders when that product comes in. They can use a mechanism in the reallocate items interface to do so. Below is a screenshot where the user can select which orders to generate commitments against and the specific quantities.

NetSuite-Reallocate-Items (1)

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Citrin Cooperman’s Digital Services Practice can help ensure that your business is getting the most out of its NetSuite investment. To learn more about how our team’s NetSuite support services can help increase your company’s efficiency and achieve its strategic objectives, reach out to your Citrin Cooperman advisor or

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