FLODocs Environment Management: A Key Tool for NetSuite Admins

Although it’s not magic, FLODocs, an automated documentation system for NetSuite, is an essential SuiteApp for NetSuite admins who want to document their customizations and processes quickly and manage changes efficiently. FLODocs is made up of five complementary tools to monitor and manage changes, they include:

  1. Automated Documentation,
  2. Process Documentation,
  3. Smart Change Management,
  4. Account Clean-up and Optimization, and
  5. Environment Management

These tools take out the guess work for NetSuite customers so they know what they have implemented and what steps they need to take to safely make changes. Documentation that could take a person years to do on their own, can now be done in a matter of days and it can be compared and automatically updated forever.

Making accounts more transparent (Automated Documentation) and understandable (Process Documentation), determining what is and is not a risky change (Smart Change Management), and improving account efficiency (Account Clean-up and Optimization) are all helpful tools to support documentation and change management in NetSuite.

What about Environment Management?

Environment Management is invaluable to admins running sandbox because it answers questions that you often might ask yourself, such as:

  • How do I find out if there are any changes or differences between production and sandbox prior to a sandbox refresh?
  • How do I validate a sandbox for testing or troubleshooting?
  • How do I make sure I migrated something properly?

Environment management can tell you instantly, saving time and improving accuracy at every step.

Once FLODocs Advanced Change Management and Environment Management are installed, the Environment Management Module (EMM) can rapidly and accurately identify any differences and changes between NetSuite accounts. The EMM primarily has three use cases:

  1. Sandbox Refreshing,
  2. User Acceptance Testing Environment Validation, and
  3. Deploying Changes to Production

The first use case deals with refreshing the sandbox. A sandbox account should represent the production account as closely as possible. However, if the sandbox account is refreshed and the admin is not careful, they can overwrite any customization changes since the last refresh. As a result, destroying any development work done.

By using the FLODocs EMM, you can identify any customizations that are newer or different from the sandbox account to the production account. It also can compare all or specific customizations. This helps avoid the risk of overwriting important development work by quickly identifying potential risks prior to hitting the refresh button.

In the second use case, user acceptance testing environment validation, FLODocs’ EMM ensures the sandbox account(s) match the production account on all relevant objects. These tests are typically used when troubleshooting or investigating specific customizations and/or scripts. They are only valid if the sandbox matches the production environment. The EMM’s search options can save time to quickly confirm that both production and sandbox accounts have the same version for each relevant customization or script.

Lastly, deploying changes to production from sandbox. FLODocs’ EMM can instantly validate that a migration from sandbox to production was performed correctly (or incorrectly). It first checks that the sandbox account mirrors the production account so there are no discrepancies between objects being migrated and any other changes.

If there is, you may have a problem. If there isn’t, you can probably go home.

FLODocs then ensures that each change in production is properly documented and reconciled with the appropriate deployment record. As well, any unexpected changes are reported to management to ensure that all changes are properly approved.

FLODocs Environment Management is a key NetSuite tool that saves admins time and improves testing and migration accuracy by automating the time-consuming steps needed to compare objects between accounts. To learn more about how to use the FLODocs Environment Management Module, detailed steps can be found in our user guide http://www.flodocs.com/userguide/.