One-Click Approvals using Email and PDF Templates in NetSuite


Our clients have been asking how they can receive a simple acknowledgement or approval from their trading partners on transactions and custom records. Sometimes they need to get an acknowledgement for a sales order from their customer. Other times they could be seeking an acknowledgement of a purchase order they’ve sent to their vendor to confirm the order has been received. 

We have developed an integrated solution called eXtendWebApprovals within the NetSuite environment so that responses can be collected back into the originating transaction or record. 

Solution Overview

We created the eXtendWebApprovals utility as a distinct addition to any NetSuite environment. This gives the client the ability to act according to their own procedures before and after they obtain a response from an external party. We built this functionality to be minimally invasive, so that it does not conflict with any previously created approval processes. 

While we offer some more advanced file approval processes within our eXtendFiles application, this approval function is about getting a simple “Yes” or “No” type of response.  The approval request is something that should be easy to trigger and be consistent across the types of inbound media the trading partner is receiving. 

Email Template Action Buttons

The first chance to obtain a response is within an outbound email template. The email templates can be easily tailored to present relevant transaction data while also embedding the action buttons within the template. This way, the recipient can respond directly from within the context of an email.  When a user clicks one of the embedded buttons, they will be rendering a response that will update automatically to NetSuite. 

Advanced PDF/HTML Action Buttons

The same functionality is also typically embedded within the Transaction Form output (Advanced PDF/HTML Form) as well. This leads to the same function / destination, except that the action links are found within the transaction form context.

Once again, when a user clicks the buttons within the email template or within the PDF Form (as seen above), they will be rendering a response that will update automatically to NetSuite.

Once the approval functionality has been enabled for a transaction/record, simple email template and PDF form modifications can be made to display these buttons when activated on those records for when a response is required.  These buttons can also be conditionally hidden if a response is not required or if a response has already been received.

Response Actions & Record Updates

Once the user selects “Yes” or “No” they are taken to a  customizable confirmation page to acknowledge their response. 

At the same time, the underlying NetSuite transaction is updated with the responses and/or comments. This response data  can automatically notify users, be configured on saved searches and/or placed on specific role dashboards. 

As shown in the above image, field updates will occur based on the recipient’s response and a notification audit trail is added as responses are received. 

Response Notifications & Automation 

Once a response is obtained, native NetSuite workflows can generate notifications automatically (if required)can then recognize the response data elements captured and perform some automation of the subsequent steps. 

Approved Notification Example:


Rejected / Change Request Notification Example:

Rejection Notification Email

Speed up and Simplify the flow 

The eXtendWebApprovals approach to engaging with external parties has significant impact wrapped into a simple package.

By summarizing key data within the email template and providing action buttons for the recipient to respond, we see acknowledgement times being reduced by 75% for some functions.

The versatility of this routine feature  can be applied to both external customer and vendor workflows. It also benefits internal workflows for employees that may not be licensed NetSuite users that need to review and respond to a record within NetSuite. 

If any of your processes require simple acknowledgements/approvals from outside parties and the current process requires manual processing and several follow ups, eXtendWebApprovals can help you.  

Streamline your communications and response processing on these types of communication activities and couple them with native NetSuite workflows and messaging templates. 

 Learn how easy this is by connecting with us!  

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