On Demand Webinar

Win with Integration: How Companies Automate Key Business Processes Between NetSuite and Other Applications

High-growth companies have one thing in common: they all automate critical business processes early on to free up resources and run faster—and to stay ahead of the competition. As organizations adopt dozens of best-of-breed applications across departments, it is critical to ensure all of these applications have the right data at the right time and are seamlessly talking to NetSuite.

Celigo has helped thousands of NetSuite users build a seamless technology stack that is centered around NetSuite for every business process imaginable.

In this on-demand webinar with integration expert Mark Simon, VP of Strategy at Celigo, we discuss:

  • The most common integration and automation use cases for NetSuite users—such as FTP, order and ticket entry, databases, and common applications.
  • Integration options available and pros/cons of each.
  • Typical automation priorities at different stages of a company’s maturity.

Watch now!

Full Webinar Transcript
Hi everybody. Welcome to our webinar, Win With Integration, How Companies Automate Key Business Processes Between NetSuite and Other Applications. My name is Rico Andrade. I’m VP of Marketing at Celigo, and before we get started, let me just go through a couple of housekeeping items here. So if you’re not familiar with ON24, this webcast console you’re looking at can be completely customized. You can resize or move any of the windows that you have open. At the bottom of your audience console, there are multiple applications and widgets that you can use. If you have any questions during the webcast, and we will be taking questions throughout, click on the Q&A widget at the bottom and submit your question. We will try to answer these questions during the Q&A session towards the end of the webcast, but if we don’t get to them in time, someone on our team will follow up with you separately. We will also be sending you an on-demand version of the webcast in a few days. And with that, let’s get started. So it is our pleasure to be part of the first webinar of NetSuite SuiteWorld 2021 sponsorship series, and this is a very relevant subject for everyone in the NetSuite ecosystem, and as you’ll see why that is. So as I said, my name is Rico Andrade. I’m VP of marketing at Celigo. I’ve been in the NetSuite ecosystem. I think this is my seventh year, and this is my fifth year at Celigo. And we are joined by Mark Simon, Celigo’s VP of strategy, someone who’s been in the NetSuite ecosystem much longer than that, previously with RSM and explorer consulting, and who has seen every implementation and use case imaginable between both the NetSuite and other applications. So with that just a quick introduction to Celigo. So if you have been in NetSuite for any amount of time, you will have seen Celigo. We are fairly ubiquitous. We are NetSuite’s largest partner with over 5000 NetSuite customers using Celigo applications. It’s a huge percentage of the NetSuite companies that are using Celigo to integrate and automate their business processes and class applications. We are very well known for some of the pre-built applications that we have, such as Salesforce, Shopify, Magento, HubSpot, and so many others. But people use us for EDI, 3PL, every imaginable use case which we will go through here. We’re very well regarded. You can see we’ve been named G2’s best software for 2021. We have very high ratings, Gartner Peer Insights, Salesforce AppExchange, and just about every vertical within NetSuite. We have a significant number of customers, ranging from the smallest customers all the way to some of NetSuite’s largest, some of which you can see here. So just to set things up a little bit, I want to just set up, “What is the case that we see around integration and around NetSuite?” And really, this is about, “How do you build your operations around NetSuite?” And so clearly, when people adopt NetSuite as their ERP, they’re using NetSuite to be the master data record, the central source of truth for things such as the financials for customer information, for product information. And because of that, NetSuite becomes this hub in which other applications need data from NetSuite, or NetSuite needs information from all sorts of other departments and personnel. And so companies end up building this architecture where NetSuite is centralized, and there’s all these satellite applications and business processes that surround NetSuite. And so what I want to do is just show as an example of how this might progress, and a simple example using quote-to-cash automation. So quote-to-cash is one of these giant business processes, singular most important business process for most organizations that it’s defined as when an opportunity is created all the way until the company is paid and the revenue is recognized. And it’s very broad. And typically speaking, when you start, when you come into NetSuite, a lot of people just want to do the most basic thing, which is perhaps connect to a CRM. The sales team is using a CRM. That’s where they’re going to be managing their opportunities. That’s where they’re going to be sending their quotes. And there’s an integration of this quote-to-cash process between the CRM and the ERP with NetSuite. But what happens then is as you scale, this process becomes a lot more complicated. So you start adding different components. You may start adding, maybe switch the CRM, but you’re going to be adding CPQ functionality. You certainly need to find a way to deal with contract management. There’s subscription and payments that you might be dealing with if you’re a software company. And all these elements increase in complexity as your company grows, as you increase in maturity and the needs of your organization changes. And you can already start to see that this becomes fairly hard if you’re dealing with this manually. If you’re having to send emails or spreadsheets to be able to deal with each one of these particular business processes as applications enter, so the complexity becomes even more important to be able to connect and automate these business processes to really create a seamless experience where you’re not making mistakes, you’re not spending time making costly errors, or a lot of FTEs manually entering data from one system to the next. But this is just the beginning because then it starts getting even more complicated than that as the application or the need might expand beyond the original quote-to-cash need. You might be adding marketing automation or email send early on in the sales funnel to be able to automate the entire business process. You might have a physical good that needs to be shipped and fulfilled. You may want to incorporate your customer success team to have full visibility into the process that’s happening here. You may want to add reporting analytics. So the process here starts getting more and more complex and you can see how they need to be able to quickly integrate as your processes change and becomes even more and more critical. And everything has its NetSuite as this hub in which it surrounds all these different processes. And this is just one example with quote-to-cash, which typically spans sales and finance and a few other departments. But if you think about it, there are so many other departments and so many other teams that also are going through their own maturity and building the complexity, a lot of which also does need to connect with the NetSuite information. So you may be dealing with ADP and payroll information that clearly needs to touch the financials. You may want to be doing quite a bit of data warehousing, Jira tickets. There’s all sorts of things that make the process even more complex in the organization, which is why it’s so critical to have a robust automation strategy and that to having a robust automation strategy, that integration is a key component of it and that this is approached with an iPaaS solution and with a proper integration roadmap. So to set this up, then I want to introduce Mark who will continue the conversation and explain how companies approach this challenge within NetSuite. Welcome, Mark. Excellent. Thank you, Rico. So first of all, first question that comes to mind is really what are your integration options? And we commonly see really three options out there at play, and the first one is kind of a build it yourself type. And this is literally building it from scratch, often coding something or leveraging, say, some of the suite scripting functionality in NetSuite, but we’ll come back to that in a second. But then the second option we see out there is leveraging a point to point solution that solved– those tend to be black boxes that solve an integration need just between two systems, say, between NetSuite and one of your sales channels, for example, or quote generation tool, whatever it may be. And then finally, the last option and what we see and what emerged as the best practice in industry is to leverage an integration platform. But before we move on there and talk about leveraging an integration platform, it’s worth digging a little bit deeper into the suite scripting option. And a reason for this is this is a question we get very, very often from our customer base, NetSuite users. It’s actually a great option, and it’s a really good question to ask, because the NetSuite platform, the suite scripting capabilities, and the whole suite flow capabilities are so powerful, and they add so much value to the ERP. It’s worth asking, “Should we use this for integration?” It’s worth looking at that a bit, because SuiteScript is designed for customizing and extending NetSuite. It wasn’t purpose built or optimized for integration. And because of that, we see some challenges that commonly crop up. One of those is difficulties around guaranteeing data delivery, monitoring of the integration process, success, error management around it. And then API and data governance become difficult because you really have to roll all that technology yourself, so you might be able to solve some simple problems, but you start to run into issues and limitations as you scale. And so it’s really important to be thinking, really setting yourself on the right foot as an organization and leveraging an integration platform for connecting with third party applications. So that leads us right to the Celigo platform and Celigo’s mission is to provide an integration platform, what we call an integration platform as a service, that provides you, as a business user, the capability to automate and integrate and further digital transformation in your organization. And the key thing about our product and platform is that we are not just a tool for IT. So we give IT and developers power and capabilities that they’re looking for, but we also enable business teams and business users to leverage the platform, build, manage, monitor, extend integrations themselves, and allow for a much broader part of your organization and a much broader skill set to to contribute to the automation and digital transformation initiative. And we accomplish this in a few ways. So the first is through a modern UI and user interface and in capabilities within our platform that allow you to integrate any business application, whether it’s an application, flat file. And then beyond that, we also leverage on top of our platform prebuilt solutions. So that’s prebuilt connectors, templates, and some very sophisticated solutions that we call business process applications that actually are predefined integrations with endpoint solutions. And have embedded business logic and allow us to manage those solutions for you and deliver very, very rapid time to value all while still leveraging an iPaaS platform. So if something doesn’t meet your needs or you need to connect with a system that is new or custom, you still have all of those capabilities at your disposal in one platform. And the combination of these really altogether gives you as a business, regardless of your size – even if you’re starting out on this journey – the ability to accelerate your integration capabilities. And this allows you to automate more quickly, and it really drives you to complete that full digital transformation journey that you embarked with by leveraging an ERP platform like NetSuite. So let’s kind of go under the hood a little bit and take a look at some of Celigo’s native and NetSuite capabilities. So the first thing is that we have hundreds of prebuilt NetSuite integrations out there. So we have our business process applications and integration applications that we talked about. But we also have– through the use of our connectors and templates, we’ve already predefined and mapped a lot of the integrations you’re likely to run into. We’re able to then facilitate deeper connectivity into NetSuite because for our integration purposes, we leverage a Celigo integrator.io managed bundle. A SuiteApp that is installed in your account. And that gives us the most sophisticated integration capability of any iPaaS platform out there with respect to NetSuite. So through the usage of that SuiteApp and that managed bundle installed in your account, that gives us the capability to trigger real-time flows, for example, based on activity that’s occurring in your NetSuite account. That can then trigger an integration and push data outbound. And so that tightens up your time frame for integration and just gives you much better synchronization of data in your business systems environment. But beyond just real-time flows, we can also use scheduled flows and into that, we leverage saved searches. So you have a lot of capability there to use features that you’re already using every day to analyze and view data in the platform and use that to drive our integrations. Another key feature is our NetSuite Assistant form mapper. And that’s an amazing feature that allows you, within our platform, to actually see the NetSuite form that a record uses and allows you to leverage that for mapping. And makes it much, much easier, especially for a business user that’s familiar with the form presentation in NetSuite, to build an integration and perform that field-to-field mapping lastly, we also offer a lot of sophisticated capability around dynamic lookups within Celigo to make those mapping exercises. Maybe you’re pulling in a transaction and you need to perform a look-up on the name of an item to get the ID of that NetSuite customer etc. We provide a full suite of capabilities that make that much, much quicker to implement and get up and running and make sure integration’s more complete. And then finally, on top of all this, we have SuiteScript hooks, NetSuite API Governance, and API management has full Ipaas capabilities. So now let’s talk a little bit about some common use cases we see for integration. So we talked a little bit about the– Rico did about the quote-to-cash process, which applied for a technology company. Here, let’s take a look at order-to-cash. And order-cash to process is very similar but applies to a company selling a physical good. And this is where we see almost every company start their integration journey. Every one of our customers starts here. You get your core ERP in place with NetSuite, and once you have that there, the first order of business is getting your sales orders, getting your sales channels connected, and getting those transactions in from those channels, whether it’s Amazon, a custom e-commerce platform, whatever it may be, getting one and often several channels, getting that data flowing in accurately and quickly. And then as soon as you get that going, just getting those orders, you start looking at dependent records, customers, items, getting data flowing upstream, etc. And then those processes expand. You start to build on that momentum, integrating with maybe a third-party logistics provider, B2B training partners, big boxes through EDI. Those need to expand, and that order-to-cash build-out and automation can then grow and grow as your business scales out and you see the need for further investment there. So what do we see as some other commonly integrated business processes beyond those order and quote-to-cash? Another very common one for us is Customer 360. And for example, NetSuite gives you great capability to get visibility into the financial side of the customer. But often you have other activities that are taking place around customer interaction, and you need to bring those in and consolidate those somewhere so that you get the whole picture of customer-facing activity. So bringing that data into NetSuite, leveraging data warehousing platforms, all of these are a big area of focus that we see for customers on the platform. Additionally, hire-to-retire, a great example. There is the onboarding process. It’s very common within companies now that a new user has 10, 12 SAS applications that they’re using day one. And that provisioning process can be really burdensome. But looking at how to integrate that trigger that from your initiating HR system and automate that, and we bring, for example, business process applications that help facilitate that. And then beyond that, we’ve got the and reporting sometimes where you need reporting across multiple applications in your environment, or even a dozen or more SaaS applications. Start looking at leveraging an external data warehousing solution and providing– then you need integration to bring that data into that repository. And then finally, marketing automation. That’s where you might be leveraging a HubSpot or Marketo, Klaviyo, a MailChimp and getting the real value from those applications and your ERP requires integration between them. So what are some of our most common static use cases that we see? We see FTP very, very common. We’ll take a little look at that in a bit. Database SQL and as well as large CSV or spreadsheet upload. Let’s jump into another one. By far, the most common use case that we see with our Free Edition users is that they are leveraging Celigo and Integrator.io to pass a file via FTP. And you can go into Celigo very quickly, create a connection to NetSuite, leverage a save search to output that data, create your flat file and pass it out via FTP, and you can accomplish this and this can be done in just minutes. And there’s a whole suite of use cases for that, but very, very powerful. Another example of a free use case that we see a lot of and that many of our customers use in general is building an integration between NetSuite and a communication collaboration platform. So Slack or Microsoft Teams are where we see this most commonly. And this is a great way to better connect your organization and get critical information, especially around exceptions, or maybe order confirmation, something notable and get that out of NetSuite and push it out to the broader team and get it in front of the right team members. And as more and more companies leverage these collaboration tools and channels, you can leverage a quick flow in our platform, leveraging a safe search and push it out via Slack and really give a lot of visibility and bring a lot of value to your users. And this is something again that we see many customers kind of quickly adopting through our Free Edition platform. So it looks like we’re a Q&A. We do have questions coming in. So let me– Great. –start going on here. And as Mark said, those use cases are the most common use cases for our Free Edition. So if you haven’t used Celigo, you can just go to celigo.com, get an account and you can start doing those integrations right now. It should be pretty straightforward. So first question Mark, how do I get started? What sort of operational team do I need to be able to build these integrations? Well, very likely you can start with the team you have. And the best thing to do with integration is just to get started on your integration automation somewhere. We’ve worked very hard with our platform to make it accessible by business users. So if someone say a NetSuite administrator, for example, or business systems admin or a tech-savvy analyst, someone that can write a formula in Excel, you have the skillset there. Someone like that has a skill set to build a flow and implement an integration with Celigo quite quickly. And we provide a lot of assistance, Celigo University, and other tools to do that. So that’s kind of the team that you need. Sometimes it can be really hard to decide where to start and picking one of these examples that we is a good way, but you can also work with us if you really want to get a sense of where the bigger vision is, and we always recommend to our customers a good way. The best thing is to plan out your integration and build what we call an integration roadmap. Look at your business systems environment, look at your needs and build that out, and that’s something that we work with our customers on when they need help during this process, and we can engage with you and build that roadmap, and give you an idea of where you can go and generate more efficiencies in your organization. Great. Actually, I have a question about CloudExtend here. Where can I find the Outlook integration? So for those of you who are familiar, Celigo has a sub-brand that’s incredibly popular. It has its own website. It’s cloudextend.io. And these are specifically for integrations that feature Excel, Microsoft 365 tools, Outreach, as well as the Gmail GSuite tools, Google Drive, and so on. So it’s a separate website and you should be able to find them all. They’re extremely popular, especially to be able to upload updates, live Excel data, live nets with data directly in Excel. Yeah, just go to cloudextend.io. So another question here, what is your pricing model? Mark, do you want to tackle that one? Sure. We have a very– think of it as a fairly straightforward pricing model. Our platform is based on multiple tiers and a tier is really determined by the number of what we call endpoints that you’re connecting to. An endpoint is simply an application. So NetSuite and a marketing automation tool like HubSpot, for example, that would be integrations between those two. That would be two endpoints. And then adding in another tool, say, an e-commerce platform, let’s pick Amazon. That would then be a third endpoint. So it’s really based on that number of endpoints using, that’s the primary determinant. And so as you grow, derive more value, connect with more endpoints, that moves you up in the tiers. And we really start the pricing out at a level that is accessible to everyone and any customer can go on on our free edition and put a free flow into production to get started, but we’ve got entry points that make sense for companies of every size. Sounds good. I think we have time for one more question here. So how is Celigo different from other integrations that exist out there? Do you want to tackle that? Sure. Happy to, Rico. So with Celigo, we provide a really unique mix of technical capabilities in the platform so that we can address large, complex integrations by embedding code in our solution and doing everything that legacy, sort of first-generation iPaaS providers can do, but then on the other side, we also bring in the accessibility of a modern UI and user experience that allows not business users, not just developers to leverage the platform, and then we combine that with the pre-built solutions that no one has in the space to get very rapid time to value, and that combination of those three pillars really sets Celigo apart. And let me just add that within the NetSuite ecosystem, there’s a reason why Celigo has been the most popular dominant player for a decade now. It’s our solutions are the most robust, most customizable, most feature-rich solutions for integration that exists out there, and really, for companies who are looking to be agile, to be able to customize, and to be able to expand as they mature, that’s when a lot of companies graduate to Celigo. So I think that’s all we have time for right now. But as we mentioned, please do go on celigo.com. You can start using this for free, and hopefully, we can cross paths. So thank you, Mark, so much for the time you took for this webinar. We are super accessible. If you want to just send an email to [email protected] or [email protected] if you have any questions, and we hope everyone has a wonderful holiday and a happy New year. Bye-bye, everyone. Excellent. Thank you for joining us.

About The Speaker

Mark Simon

VP Strategy
Celigo

Mark comes to Celigo having spent the last 21 years in technology. He started his career as a software developer in 1997, building e-commerce applications and custom integrations for several years. He then co-founded and led technology and operations as CTO for Evo, a successful e-commerce company that grew from $0 to $13M in revenue in three years. He then moved on to start a career in consulting with Explore Consulting, an award-winning Solution Provider and VAR. Mark has worked with clients across several industries including multiple software clients and publicly traded companies pre and post IPO. His efforts for software clients included designing and developing automated processes for sales order processing, subscription management, and provisioning among others.

Rico Andrade

VP of Marketing
Celigo

Rico oversees Celigo’s marketing organization, where is he is responsible for the company’s brand, messaging, demand generation, outreach programs, events, and communications. Prior to joining Celigo, Rico was VP of Marketing at iCharts, significantly enhancing the company’s visibility and reputation inside the NetSuite ecosystem. He spent 13 years as the Executive Producer at Transvideo Studios, where he worked closely on marketing strategy with some of the biggest companies in Silicon Valley. In addition, Rico also ran his own consulting company, traveled the world teaching innovation and design as part of the Stanford d.school’s d.global initiative, and helped launch Unreasonable at Sea with the Unreasonable Group. Rico holds degrees in Computer Science and Communication from Stanford University.

Meet Celigo

Celigo automates your quote-to-cash process with an easy & reusable integration platform-as-a-service (iPaaS), trusted by thousands of eCommerce and SaaS companies worldwide.

Use it now and later to expedite integration work without adding more data silos, specialized technical skillsets or one-off projects.

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