Blog Credit: Joseph Clancey, January 27, 2022 (How NetSuite Scales as Your Business Grows | NetSuite)
When an organization procures a cloud-based technology solution, like financial management software and similar business management applications, the solution provider generally stipulates specific service characteristics that identify usage parameters within the account, like monthly transaction volumes, number of users, file storage limits and concurrent processing.
If your business is rapidly growing and you’re approaching or surpassing those service parameters, you need to ensure your business applications can handle the added demand requirements for optimal performance.
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The Impacts Business Growth Can Have on Your Business Systems
As your company grows, neglecting to address your service levels could impact business efficiency and customer service. If your business systems can’t keep up with increasing demand, bottlenecks and delays could introduce additional business risk and lost profits. Here are some of the areas in which businesses start to exceed the capacity of their solution’s service parameters during periods of growth:
- Monthly Transaction Line Volume. If your business has a peak selling season or is generally experiencing fast overall growth, periods of high order volume can strain the responsiveness of your business systems and potentially delay processing sales orders into invoices. That means you may be missing out on recognizing revenue for the month and losing profits. If your systems can’t handle your order throughput, you’ll not only run into system delays on the back-end, but customers may experience slowness browsing your website or errors with checkout that could also lead to lost sales.
To have a better understanding where your monthly transaction lines sit, your solution should be instrumented with transaction line reports that give your administrator and key users the visibility to see when they’re approaching transaction limits that could put your business at risk. The reporting provides a better overview and a deeper understanding of monthly transaction lines metrics before you hit your limits.
- Number of Users. The number of users that can be supported in an environment also impacts the responsiveness of applications. Employees may experience significant delays navigating the system, like loading pages or running reports, which leads to inconsistent usability, and ordering and billing delays due to higher resource demand.
Just like transaction line reports mentioned above, knowing the number of users is paramount to running your solution efficiently. A simple user visibility report should let you check full licenses so that you can proactively see when you are approaching your user threshold.
- Concurrency Limits. You may experience issues if your business system is trying to route too many concurrent web services processes at the same time. Setting up too many operations, scripts and file import jobs takes a toll on system performance as these loads are layered on top of one another. Service levels usually dictate the base and maximum concurrency amounts, which governs the rate at which an account can process parallel operations like importing and exporting data. Without a higher concurrency limit, operations become delayed across the entire system which can lead to lower productivity and efficiency.
To ensure you don’t fall victim to slow or delayed operational processing and performance, you should equip your solution with application checks to gauge the health of your applications. These checks include things like page load time and summary details, processing monitoring, web services analysis and similar metrics that are useful for troubleshooting.
Rightsizing NetSuite along with Your Business Growth
NetSuite uses service tiers to scale database throughput capacity to meet the growing demands of individual NetSuite users. NetSuite service tiers deliver the additional level of resources needed to maximize business productivity by defining key service characteristics, such as maximum monthly transaction lines, file storage capacity, number of users and concurrency levels.
With NetSuite, businesses can use an extensive reporting dashboard from the service tiers metrics workbook, which provides dynamic views into the data. NetSuite administrators can leverage prebuilt analytics views that detail both summary level and detail usage data in real-time, including file storage and monthly transaction lines. For a look into concurrent operations, the Application Performance SuiteApp offers visually interactive performance data to gauge the overall health of your account. Combined, these tools help you ensure that you’re running at optimal levels and that you know when it’s time for change.
Rightsizing to the appropriate service level can be easily overlooked, especially if you are growing quickly. Luckily, it is straightforward to move to a higher service tier when your organization requires higher usage parameters. If you proactively upgrade your service level, you can process more monthly transactions and concurrent integrations, as well as handle more users and file storage. This helps you avoid system bottlenecking during peak periods, maintain a consistent user experience within NetSuite, and reduce system delays.