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NetSuite Support: Identifying Which Custom Fields to Create

By Citrin Cooperman Digital Services Practice .

NetSuite allows for the addition of fields in just a few easy steps that can be done from the customization menu or directly from the form a user is working on. This eliminates the cost and time associated with development. That being said, it is very important to know what type of field to add. With effective NetSuite support, users can become aware of a few questions they should ask before creating a new field.

How to identify which custom field to create

  1. What record types does this apply to?

    Custom fields may apply to an item, CRM record, or transaction.
  2. How long is the information going into the field?

    Free-form text is up to 300 characters, but long text goes up to 1,000,000 characters.
  3. What is the purpose of this data?

    The data types supported by certain fields range from hyperlinks to rich text, time, date, and numbers, just to name a few.
  4. If it is a number field, what is it a currency, decimal, or integer?

    Picking an integer field when you need a decimal can cause errors in the future. To change this field type, it may sometimes require exporting all the data, changing the field, and reimporting those values. Therefore, it is important to consider the type of integer that will be used in the field.
  5. Is the value stored or not?

    One problem is that stored fields cannot be used for rollup values — consider this when creating a new field.

Quick tips for support when using common fields in NetSuite

Field types Where to use them Example
Check box Any record type that involves a true or false value. This can be a better option than reference a list with the values of true or false as options. Excluding an employee from searches using a check box to indicate that they should be excluded. This may be easier than using a multi select field and picking all employees except for the one that should be excluded.
Date Any record where a date is necessary Date of hire on an employee record
List/Record Any record with three or more options. Days of the week, industry type, etc.
Decimal Any record with a floating decimal place. Distance, non-currency calculations, or currency calculations with three or more places after the decimal
Free form Any record that is less than 300 characters, but using numbers in this field should be avoided. Names or short phrases for a custom item
Hyperlink Any record that requires a link to a website. This can also be used for tracking. A company’s website link, a Drop Box link from a customer, or tracking
Long text Any record where a full description is needed. The character limit is 1,000,000. Legalese or long item descriptions
Multiple select Any record where several values need to be selected. Interest in multiple products, how a customer heard about a company, etc.
Text area The character limit is 4,000 for this field, so it is wise to just use the long text field instead. Any occasion where you accidentally go over 4,000 characters will result in issues. Descriptions or notes


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