NetSuite Opportunity Status : Effective Opportunity Management

The opportunity record in NetSuite is an essential part of any business with a mature sales function. The opportunity is the record used by new business and account managers to manage their pipeline of potential business. Sales, as we know, is not a passive line of work, so managers will be closely monitoring opportunities weekly and even daily to ensure their forecasts are accurate and reliable.

The easiest way to identify where an opportunity sits in the pipeline is to check the status. NetSuite opportunity statuses form the backbone of forecast reporting and also drive the projected value of future sales.

While customizable, understanding the standard values and their associated behaviors is an essential starting point for any sales team using NetSuite. In this article, we’ll dive into the world of opportunity management, explore the meaning behind each status, and provide insights for beginners to hit the ground running.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to take your sales game to the next level (I couldn’t resist!).

NetSuite Opportunity Status Form showing In Progress Status

What are the Opportunity Statuses in NetSuite?

The opportunity is one of the few records in NetSuite that blesses us with not one set of statuses, but two!

Transaction Statuses on the NetSuite Opportunity record

First, we have the transaction statuses that are very similar to those seen on sales orders, purchase orders and other transactions that need tracking. The standard transaction statuses for opportunities are as follows:

  • In Progress: This is the default status of an opportunity record that will be assigned when the new record is created. This indicates that there are no estimates associated with the opportunity and a sale has not yet been made.
  • Issued Estimate: When the status is Issued Estimate, there is an estimate record associated with the opportunity. A user cannot manually select this status – the record will be updated automatically when an estimate is created via the opportunity in question.
  • Closed – Won: When a sale has been made via this opportunity record, the status will be updated to Closed – Won. This status is also tied to the probability field. If the probability is changed to 100% the status will display as Closed-Won.
  • Closed – Lost: When the probability of an opportunity drops to 0%, it is labelled as Closed – Lost.

Opportunity Statuses in NetSuite

The above statuses all indicate something different about where the opportunity is in its process lifecycle. They are helpful but they do not tell the full story. To truly understand the sales position behind each record you need to look at the opportunity status.

Each value of the opportunity status is tied to a probability of closure and both the status and probability percentage can be found in the Primary Information of the opportunity form.

NetSuite Opportunity form status and probability field

The standard opportunity statuses and their weightings are as follows:

Closed – Lost0%The opportunity was pursued but ultimately lost to a competitor or another factor.
Identified Decision Makers30%Key decision makers within the potential customer’s organization have been identified.
In Discussion20%Discussions are taking place between the sales person and the potential customer.
In Negotiation75%Negotiations are taking place.
Proposal50%A proposal has been presented, likely in the form of the NetSuite estimate record.
Purchasing90%The customer is completing their own internal purchasing process to allow them to proceed.
Closed – Won100%The opportunity resulted in a sale.
Renewal100%An existing customer has renewed their service.

These statuses can be customized by navigating to Setup > Sales > Customer Statuses. There you can set your own labels and adjust the percentage values.

To ensure that your sales forecasting is accurate, you will need to do some set up in the Sales Preferences. At a high level, the probability setting will adjust the projected total of the opportunity and factor it into the forecast for the period.

NetSuite Opportunity Probability, projected total and weighted total fields

How to View the Status of an Opportunity in NetSuite

Statuses for all transaction types in NetSuite, not only opportunities, can be seen clearly on the face of the record itself.

Navigate to an opportunity in your system and you will see the transaction status in a grey box to the right of the customer name at the top of the form.

The opportunity status can be found in the Status field in the Primary Information section of the standard opportunity form.

NetSuite Opportunity form status locations

On the Default view of the opportunities list page you will also see a filter for transaction status. I have customized the view in the screenshot below to show opportunity status as well.

Filters on the Opportunity Lists page in NetSuite

These two together should allow sales managers to filter opportunities every which way possible. They can then order their filtered results by amount, for example, by clicking on the header of the amount column

Opportunity Statuses and the NetSuite Sales Process

Unlike some of the other transactions in NetSuite the opportunity record doesn’t use it’s statuses to drive further actions within the system. In general the statuses are used to indicate where the sales person is in their own external sales process.

There are only two transactions generated off the back of an opportunity. They are the estimate and the sales order. Either of these can be created at any time and their creation is not driven by any specific status.

Until the first estimate is created the transaction status will show In Progress, regardless of the stage in discussions. After the final estimate is sent to the customer there is only two places the opportunity can go next – Lost or Won.

The very basic process flow, using transaction statuses, is as follows.

NetSuite Opportunity Status Process Flow

Frequently Asked Questions about Opportunity Statuses

How do I change the status of an opportunity in NetSuite?

The transaction status (in the grey box to the right of the customer name on the opportunity form) cannot be changed manually. This is automatically populated based on what transactions have been generated against the opportunity. The opportunity status can be changed by selecting a value from the status field in the Primary Information section of the opportunity form.

Can I customize the opportunity statuses in NetSuite to fit my business needs?

Yes. The opportunity statuses can be customized to fit your businesses needs. Navigate to Setup > Sales > Customer Statuses. There you can edit the standard statuses or inactivate them and create your own.

How can I use opportunity statuses to track my sales pipeline in NetSuite?

Opportunity statuses can be used to track the progress of sales opportunities through the pipeline in NetSuite. By assigning a status to each opportunity, you can easily see which opportunities are in the early stages of the sales process and which ones are closer to closing. Monitoring can be done via custom searches and reports or through the suite of standard forecast reports. These can be found under Reports > Forecast.

In conclusion, understanding the opportunity statuses in NetSuite is critical for any sales team to effectively manage their pipeline and accurately forecast future sales. The transaction statuses and opportunity statuses work together to provide a complete picture of where an opportunity stands in its lifecycle.

Administrators should work with their sales teams to set the opportunity up in the best way for the business to streamline the workflow and increase efficiency.

If there is anything further regarding the use of the statuses on the opportunity record that you are curious about, feel free to get in touch. We welcome your questions.

For a complete list of all transaction statuses in NetSuite visit this article.

For more information on the sales cycle you may interested in the following articles:

Everything You Need to Know About NetSuite’s CRM Capabilities

Maximizing Your Sales Pipeline with NetSuite Opportunity CSV Import

NetSuite vs Salesforce

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