ZoneApprovals is a managed bundle and is Built for NetSuite (BFN) verified by NetSuite. All releases undergo an extensive testing cycle before being released to Production accounts. New releases are announced upfront by email to the contact person(s) registered for new functionality which is noted when the first two places in the version number change (e.g. from version 1.7.x to 1.8.0). Patches and bug fix updates are not announced upfront and are noted when the last place in the version number is updated (e.g. from version 1.80.0 to 1.80.1).
General release information
Release 1.8.0 has been released on the 10th of November 2023 and contains numerous enhancements and bug fixes. Below you can find more information related to the enhancements and bug fixes. We will update your Production account automatically and the Sandbox account can be updated from your (the customer's) end at any given time.
FFA-659 Option to include/exclude user roles from a matrix
This version addresses the challenge of Netsuite instances with numerous user roles, which can lead to a cluttered matrix of options. On a user role, a new setting is introduced that allows users to control which roles are visible on a matrix. Unless the checkbox "AVAILABLE FOR ZONEAPPROVALS" is enabled, a role as an Approver will no longer be available on a matrix in edit mode. Matrixes that were created before this change will still show in view mode the selected user role, but in edit mode it will show as blank. The internal logic will remain working as expected, but for correct insights, we do recommend enabling the checkbox on all roles that should be available in the matrix.
FFA-663 Introduction of bulk approval email functionality
ZoneApprovals offers the option to set custom Netsuite Groups for approval routing but the system didn't send out emails to the group members so they can approve through email. Version 1.8.0 provides a new setting to enable approval by email for groups. To enable this navigate to the group and in edit mode enable the newly introduced checkbox named "Send Approval By Email To Group Users (ZoneApprovals)".
When this feature is enabled all members will receive an email that allows them to approve or reject the transaction, but only 1 member can approve or reject. All additional responses the system will receive will be silently ignored. Also, the existing approval by email settings remains active. This means that the approval by email must be enabled in the main or subsidiary configuration and also on the employee level.
FFA-667 Exclude System Generated Transactions
It can be a situation that as a company you create certain transactions fully automated. This can achieved with for example integrations, scripted logic, or through a CSV import. ZoneApprovals wasn't able to provide dedicated approval logic for system-generated transactions, but from this release onwards it is possible to define dedicated approval logic to these system-generated transactions so that they are automatically submitted for approval or are fully automatically approved. This allows for a more streamlined and finetuned process.
It is possible to set the behavior on several different levels. These levels are as follows
- ZoneApprovals Configuration
- ZoneApprovals Transaction Configuration
In both configurations sections a new subsection is visible named "Exclude System Generated Transaction". In this section, the context should be chosen first. The context is the internal Netsuite logic for how the transaction or record was created. For example, if a user imports a CSV the context is equal to "CSV Import". After selecting the context type it is possible to define the approval behavior. As a user, it is possible to choose from
- Automatically submit the transaction for approval routing
- Automatically approve transactions
When no setup has been created the system will not interfere with the created transaction.
FFA-684 Extension Segmentation Options
Previously, the Approval matrix provided chips for standard NetSuite segmentation and an option for adding custom segments. With this update, the matrix has been enhanced to provide support for both standard and custom NetSuite fields so that full flexibility is provided to the end user. The SuiteApp-supported custom and standard fields that can be used are
- List/record (dropdown fields)
- Text fields.
As a user, you can now configure any of the supported fields and use them as an approval routing condition. No additional setup is required as configuration, apart from the small setup present on each matrix. Use the chip “Add field” to configure your custom field and follow the steps on the screen. After the additional field has been created is will become visible as a chip that can be dragged and dropped into the matrix.
FFA-918 Add Saved Search to display all pending approval transactions
Version 1.8.0 includes a new saved search that shows by default all the transactions that are in the status pending approval. This search can be used for example as a reminder. The new search can be found by typing "ZA All Transactions Routed in ZoneApprovals (unrestricted)" in the global Netsuite search.
FFA-943 Approval By Email | Send all the Documents attached to a Transaction
This release brings a new functionality that is based on customer feedback. When the feature approval by email is used it is often the situation that the employee does not has access to the Netsuite environment. This situation can be a challenge if the transaction holds additional supporting documents under the communication tab. To eliminate this situation a new configuration option has been introduced that allows the approval by email to include all the documents that are stored on the communication tab inside Netsuite.
To enable this option navigate to SETUP->ZONEAPPROVALS->APPROVAL CONFIGURATION. Open a configuration and in the sub-section "Approvals by E-mail" a new configuration option can be enabled named "Include Additional Documents"
FFA-979 Group and role approvers visibility in the bulk approval page
In previous versions, the Bulk Approvals page only displayed individual users as Approvers in the form of Next Approver, Current Approver, and Previous Approver, following the Approval progress of a single transaction.
Yet, if a Role Approver or a Group Approver were configured inside a matrix, the Bulk Approval page would ignore them and display a blank value for the Next, Current, and Previous Approver. This version release extends the Bulk Approvals page to fully display all Approvers by providing full visibility of Approvers of the “Pending Approval” transactions.
FFA-1003 Enhanced error audit trail logging
ZoneApprovals tries to always provide detailed information in the audit logs, but in certain situations, it can happen that in the background certain processes aren't executed as expected. These situations were recorded in the standard Netsuite logging but weren't visible to the end user leading to uncertain situations.
In this version, the audit logging has been extended in such a way that internal errors are captured and displayed on the approval logs so that full transparency is provided to the end user. This functionality works fully automated and no additional configuration settings are needed.
FFA-1025 Ability to define a custom approval sourcing
Version 1.8.0 introduces functionality that allows end users to select an Approver from a custom field sourced from two key areas:
- Entity Records: Vendors and Employees
- Transactions Records: The extended functionality covers all supported transaction types
To configure such custom approver sourcing navigate to SETUP->ZONEAPPROVALS->APPROVAL CONFIGURATION. Open a configuration and navigate to the sub section named "Custom Sourcing". Select a sourcing type (can be Entity or Transaction), then set the ID of the Approver custom field.
When the setup has been created the matrix will show a select option in the dropdown where an approver can be selected. The new option is named "Sourced Predefined Approver". The SuiteApp protects the user and when a misconfiguration has been made the SuiteApp will set the default approver.
FFA-1041 3-Way matching approval routing for ZoneCapture customers
Zone customers who are using ZoneApprovals in combination with ZoneCaptures can now benefit from a full 3-way matching approval routing. When both SuiteApps are installed in the Netsuite environment the ZoneApprovals SuiteApp allows configuring 3-Way match approval routing based on the following differences
- Differences in quantities
- Differences in rates
- Differences in total amount
- No differences detected
To enable this feature navigate to SETUP->ZONEAPPROVALS->APPROVAL CONFIGURATION. Open a configuration and navigate to the sub section named "Workflow Behavior". In this section a checkbox will be visible only when ZoneCapture is installed and configured for 3-way matching. This checkbox is named "Enable Zonecapture 3-Way Match".
When this feature is enabled the matrix will provide a new "Chip" option which can be dragged into the matrix line and then allows to select a preference.
FFA-1042 Enhance deployment tool
This version introduces a new Deployment tool for record types (transactions). The purpose of the new tool is to improve the deploying behavior of transactions and protect users from misconfiguring the system. Unless the dependencies listed inside this link are enabled Netsuite Dependencies, an end user will not be able to deploy a transaction type. The new deployment page also allows to easily drill down into the system notes from deploying. Besides this, the new deployment tool will protect end-users from undeploying logic when there are still transactions in the approval routing ensuring that a transaction can never get stuck in the process.
Navigate to SETUP->ZONEAPPROVALS->DEPLOYING to configure the SuiteApp.
FFA-1124 Add Saved Search to display all rejected approval transactions
Version 1.8.0 includes a new saved search that shows by default all the transactions that are in the status rejected. This search can be used for example as a reminder. The new search can be found by typing "ZA Rejected Transactions" in the global Netsuite search.
FFA-1125 Add Saved Search to display all transactions not submitted for approval routing
Version 1.8.0 includes a new saved search that shows by default all the transactions that aren't submitted for approval routing. This search can be used for example as a reminder. The new search can be found by typing "ZA Not Submitted For Approval Transactions" in the global Netsuite search.
FFA-1126 Add Saved Search to display all approved approval transactions
Version 1.8.0 includes a new saved search that shows by default all the transactions that are in the status approved. This search can be used for example as a reminder. The new search can be found by typing "ZA Approved Transactions" in the global Netsuite search.
FFA-1141 GL account routing for purchase orders
The option to route approval routing based on a selected GL account was only available for journal entries and vendor bills. This release further extends the logic so that also purchase orders can be routed based on the selected GL account in the expense section. The GL Impact "Chip" in the matrix will be shown automatically when configuring a matrix for vendor bills. As a user, it is possible to drag and drop this segmentation into the matrix and define the approval routing from that moment based on the GL accounts on the expense lines.
FFA-768 User should not be able to create a new child config for the transaction type if the child config already exists
The recommended configuration setup inside ZoneApprovals is a 1:1 relationship (standing for one ZoneApprovals Configuration to one Subsidiary only). This setup allows users for flexible additional adjustments per transaction type, using Transaction Child configurations. Child configurations can be linked to only one main ZoneApprovals Configuration.
To avoid misconfigurations of these Child transaction records, a protection is built that disallows end users to create more than one child configuration, per transaction type.
FFA-835 Sales order field Status should follow Approval status behavior
Under SETUP->ACCOUNTING->ACCOUNTING PREFERENCES, a user can set the default status for Sales order which can either be “Pending Approval” or “Pending Fulfillment”. When the behavior was set to Pending Fulfillment, the ZoneApprovals SuiteApp skipped the Approvals logic and resulted in auto-approved transactions.
To eliminate the event of auto-approved Sales Orders, a solution is implemented that would ignore the Accounting preferences setup, and enforce the status of “Pending Approval”. Pending Fulfillment as a status already stands for approved and ready-to-be-fulfilled transactions, therefore the defaulting behavior.
FFA-712 Approve and Reject strings fields should be mandatory if the Approval by email feature is enabled
In previous versions, when a user enabled Approvals by email in the ZoneApprovals Configuration, the Approve and Reject string fields were not mandatory. If not configured properly, the Approval by e-mail feature would not behave as expected, therefore resulting in no action for submitted for approval transactions.
In this version release, we fully protect end users from misconfiguring the system, by disallowing the saving of a configuration record if these two fields are not being properly set.
FFA-961 Approval reason mandatory is omitted for Group approvers
Enabling the "APPROVAL REASON MANDATORY" checkbox within the ZoneApprovals Configuration triggers a system behavior where an approval reason becomes mandatory when approving a transaction in the UI. This functionality performs as intended for all transaction types, except when a Group was set as a matrix approver.
This version release improves the Group Approvers behavior and correctly prompts the Approval reason as mandatory if configured.
FFA-994 Freeze the user column selection in the bulk approval page
In this latest release, we have enhanced the user experience within the Bulk Approvals page, providing more control over how information is displayed. Users can now conveniently show, hide, and rearrange columns to tailor the view to their preferences, while in previous versions this availability was limited only to a single page refresh.
FFA-1006 Future date matrices are applied to transactions
Apart from the main Approval matrix, users can create additional matrices for special peak seasons and can introduce more complex segmentation or a stronger set of approvers, according to needs. Yet, in previous versions, when applying matrix logs, the highest ID in the active matrix list was taken into consideration, regardless of the “Start Date” of a matrix.
This version introduces an improved logic that would respect Matrix's “Start Date”, and applies logs as configured inside the matrix, taking the Creation date of a transaction as a benchmark.
FFA-1007 Inactive Approval configurations are available for selection in the matrix
In this latest release, addressed is a critical issue to ensure that only active ZoneApproval configurations are available for selection under an Approval Matrix. Previously, an inactivated configuration remained accessible, leading to blocked transactions submitted for approval.
FFA-1011 Redirecting to a Group results in blocked transactions
The previous release (1.7.0), introduced an enhancement that granted end users the ability to redirect approvals to either individual approvers or groups. In the latest version (1.7.3), when redirecting a transaction to a group of approvers, the transaction would become temporarily blocked within the user interface. In this version release, this behavior is fully removed, allowing Group approvers to properly process transactions, received as redirected.
FFA-1017 Approval by email in closed periods behavior
Two different behaviors were present when a custom role (without Override Period restrictions permission) was approving transactions in locked accounting periods. If the approval was done in the UI, the posting period will be respected as according to the role permissions. But, if approval of transactions was performed via email, the posting period will default to the locked period, executing the posting as an Administrator, rather than respecting role permissions.
This behavior is fully removed in this version release. In 1.8.0 when a custom role is approving transactions either through email or in the UI, the posting period will respect the role's permissions and the setup under Accounting preferences (either post transaction in Next open or Current period).
FFA-1022 Scrollbar in the approval portlet
In the previous version, the Approvals Portlet had an issue that hindered users from having a complete overview of displayed Approval chips. The presence of a scroll bar required users to constantly scroll within the portlet, which could be frustrating and counterproductive. As a result, the scroll bar has been removed in this version release to improve the user experience.
FFA-1065 Email response from group approver not captured
Upon introducing Bulk Approval’s email, an email to a Group approver was sent and received as expected. Nevertheless, upon replying via email, no response was captured blocking a transaction with the “Pending Approval” status. Further improvements have been implemented to successfully move transactions through the approval routing, and successfully capture an Approval/Rejection reason, as listed inside an email response.
FFA-1067 [Approval Reason Mandatory] Omitted for Super Approver
Once a user is set as Super Approver, it is expected that this user can approve any transaction routed for approval, even if the user is not configured inside an Approval Matrix. Since no additional setup is present, a Super Approver is forced to record an Approval reason for each approved log. This logic wasn't working as expected and allowed Super Approvers to approve transactions without them being prompted to provide the reason for approval.
This behavior is fully resolved in this version release, allowing for a comprehensive history of audit trail logs.
FFA-1077 [Group Approval email] Sales Order & Credit Memos - email is not sent
When a matrix was generated for sales orders and credit memos with group approvers the end user encountered unexpected behavior that resulted in the situation that no approval emails were sent out. This version resolves this issue so that the approval by emails are sent out as expected.
FFA-1078 Approval email is sent even when disabled
On the employee record is it possible to activate the approval by email functionality. When this functionality wasn't enabled the SuiteApp still did still send out the approval email. This behavior wasn't correct and is resolved in this release so that the email sending correctly respects the configured preferences.
FFA-1082 Approval reason copied over audit logs when a role approval is active
When the Approval Reason was set to mandatory on the ZoneApprovals configuration, and a matrix setup of Role Approvers was present, after Approving a transaction, the reason set was copied over to the remaining logs of a transaction.
This behavior heavily impacted the audit trail history and, therefore was removed in this version release. After approval, and capture of the reason, logs are applied and converted to the next state as expected.
FFA-1163 The "empty" matrix option acts like "any"
In the matrix segmentation options is it possible to select the option "empty" or "any" instead of an actual value. This provides more flexibility but the "empty" option wasn't evaluated by the SuiteApp correctly and responded on all situations. This did lead in certain situations to excessive approval logging. This release alters the behavior so that this option only triggers when the selected segment is empty.