In the current labor market, finding and retaining skilled, knowledgeable NetSuite developers isn’t always easy. Myriad considerations have to go into the recruiting, hiring and training process, and not everyone is cut out to take on the challenges of implementing cloud enterprise resource planning (ERP) platforms like NetSuite for the diverse clientele that ScaleNorth serves.

When adding new talent to our NetSuite development team, we like to hire consultants or developers that have at least four years (or more) of NetSuite scripting experience. More specifically, they should have hands-on experience with the SuiteCloud Platform (SuiteScript 1.0, 2.0/2.x, SuiteFlow, SuiteBuilder, SuiteTalk) as well as with programming languages like HTML, CSS and JavaScript. It’s always a plus if they were full-stack developers prior to becoming NetSuite developers, but that’s not a requirement.

NetSuite scripting is relatively easy for experienced developers to learn and is essentially JavaScript + SuiteScript. However, there are some NetSuite scripting features that are comparatively new, and few developers have experience with these features. If a new recruit has experience with these specific areas, which include the SuiteCloud Development Framework (SDF), SuiteQL, and REST Web Services, that person usually makes a great addition to our current talent pool.

“About 75% of the team is made up of top tier ex-NetSuite Professional Services consultants and the majority of them have held full-stack developer roles prior to being NetSuite developers,” says Kel Custodio, ScaleNorth’s VP of Technical Services. “We have expertise on all technology fronts, be it backend/front-end, or even database-related solutions.” ScaleNorth also has five seasoned technology leads, each of whom has at least 10 years of NetSuite experience.

“All of these tech managers are multi-certified NetSuite professionals who hold Celigo certifications,” Custodio adds. “They are well-versed in scripting and NetSuite integrations, and able to efficiently deliver and engage quickly.”

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Integration and Customization Work

Understanding the challenges companies face when they try to knit together disparate technology applications that don’t “talk” to one another, ScaleNorth places a big emphasis on creating streamlined integrations with NetSuite. NetSuite developers that have experience handling direct, point-to-point integrations between the ERP third-party systems—or with Celigo, Boomi, MuleSoft or other iPaas connectors—are very valuable and always welcome.

Certifications are also important, with some of the key ones being SuiteFoundation, SuiteCloud Developer II, and Administrator. There are also certifications with popular iPaas platform, Celigo, such as the Level 4 and Celigo Integration Application certifications. Experience with other iPaas solutions such as Workato and Dell Boomi are in high demand as well.

“Ideally, we like to hire individuals who have Celigo Level 4 certification,” says Custodio, “because more than 80% of our development staff holds that designation.” Experience in custom integrations is another key feature to look out for. We’re often tasked with integrating NetSuite with software that is not compatible with the top iPaas platforms, so team members with expertise in this area are heavily sought after.

For its clients, ScaleNorth also creates customizations to supplement NetSuite’s native functionalities and, as such, is always on the lookout for developers who can “think beyond” the ERP’s limitations and come up with solutions for specific customers.

“We’re always happy to add NetSuite developers who have created solutions that can be hosted in AWS or Azure, for example,” says Custodio, “because we’ve encountered situations where we had to develop applications that are hosted outside of NetSuite but can also interact with the ERP’s customizations or scripts.”

SuiteCloud Developer Network

As a NetSuite SuiteCloud Developer Network (SDN) partner, ScaleNorth develops product solutions called “ScaleApps.” These are our own versions of SuiteApps and each one has to go through the NetSuite SDN-certification process to ensure they follow all the best practices, earn the seal of approval (Built for NetSuite) from the NetSuite SDN team and then be published in the SuiteApp marketplace.

ScaleNorth currently has two published SuiteApps: the native Construction Bundle and the hybrid NetSuite-to-Procore Connector (Procore is a leading project management software application for the construction industry). Publishing a SuiteApp requires an extremely thorough process of deliberation. “It’s a thesis-type of activity; you have to prove that whatever you’re publishing does not conflict with NetSuite’s native functionality,” Custodio explains, “and that it’s not going to be a redundant solution to what’s already available in the marketplace.”

The SuiteApp development process also requires ScaleNorth’s NetSuite developers to sit down with their counterparts on the NetSuite team to review all of the code—line by line, block by block and/or function by function. This ensures that the developers followed NetSuite’s SuiteApp Architectural Fundamentals and Examples (SAFE) guide protocols.

“There’s a documented set of best practices and they want to make sure that the architecture and the design of the SuiteApp solution follow them,” says Custodio, “and that you’ve tested the architecture against the stated guidelines or checkpoints.” Then with every new NetSuite release, ScaleNorth’s developers have to ensure that the application is compatible and working with that new ERP release.

These same standards are adhered to for the 100+ NetSuite accelerators that ScaleNorth’s technical team has developed. These accelerators, though less robust than the ScaleApps, are apps custom developed for customers to optimize their NetSuite instance. They consist of a broad scope of solutions such as credit card reconciliation, Accounts Payable automation, dunning management and more.

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Teamwork Makes the Dream Work

Good communication and collaboration skills are always important in today’s workplace, where teams work together internally and with client sponsors to get projects over the finish line. Soft skills are incredibly important, especially in a remote work environment, so having a team filled with effective communicators is extremely important. For this reason, NetSuite developers who have prior consulting experience or a history in client facing roles are heavily sought after and those who can create customizations to bridge gaps from Business Requirement Documents (BRD) often make excellent NetSuite development professionals. Exposure to the software development lifecycle is also a plus, as is any hands-on experience working in agile or waterfall environments.

Ultimately, Custodio says ScaleNorth’s development team stands out in its ability to write optimal scripts that follow NetSuite’s best practices, are scalable and that make correct use of application programming interfaces (APIs) and other script types. “We make scripts that are performance proof that not only meet our clients’ immediate needs,” he says, “but are also completely scalable as their companies grow year over year.”

If you’re in need of NetSuite developers to optimize your NetSuite instance, contact ScaleNorth today.