Netsuite – Importing transactions into an Expense Report


I recently had a request to make expense reporting easier for a finance department. They wanted an easier way to get their employees' reported expenses into Netsuite and associate them to an expense report without a lot of manual entry. The process they were using required the employee to email receipts to the finance department, then someone would take time out of their day to manually enter the expenses one-by-one into Netsuite. This was a time consuming process and prone to errors.

To make things easier, I created a CSV import that would allow them to import expenses in bulk and then review them before submitting the expense report.

CSV file template

The process begins by creating a CSV file with the following columns:

20230202-01 Jane Doe Ready 1/31/2023 12345.67 USD CC – Printing and Copying Test Visa USD
20230202-02 Guy Person Ready 2/1/2023 5555.11 USD CC – Postage and Delivery Test 2 American Express USD TRUE
20230202-03 Tim Kavaklian-D'Annecy Ready 2/2/2023 987.65 USD CC – Travel-Airfare Test 3 Mastercard USD

Screenshot of Excel, Netsuite transactions import template

Save the CSV somewhere on your computer and open it in Excel. The first row is the header row and the second row is an example of the data that needs to be entered. The columns are as follows:

The values for these columns come from Netsuite and you will need to copy and paste the valid entries into the CSV for it to be imported correctly:

After filling in the information in the CSV file, navigate in Netsuite to Setup > Import/Export > Import CSV Records.

In the Import Assistant, set the “Import Type” to Employees and the “Record Type” to Imported Employee Expenses. Change the CSV file location to your imported file then click the Next button:

If you don't have a “Imported Employee Expenses” item, you will need to enable this feature first.

Screenshot of Netsuite, CSV Import Assistant wizard

Leave the Import Option as “Add” and click the Next button:

Screenshot of Netsuite, CSV Import Assistant wizard

On the Field Mapping page, leave the values as default and click the Next button:

Screenshot of Netsuite, CSV Import Assistant wizard

On the “Save mapping…” page, hover over the dropdown arrow and click “Run”:

Screenshot of Netsuite, CSV Import Assistant wizard

The job will begin to import. Click on the “Import Job Status” link to view the progress:

Screenshot of Netsuite, CSV Import Assistant wizard

The MESSAGE column will indicate any issues with your import. Click the “CSV Response” link to download a report:

Screenshot of Netsuite, CSV Import Assistant wizard, Job Status page

These records will need to be re-imported once remediated:

Screenshot of Excel, showing Netsuite Expense Import results

Associating Employee Expenses with Expense Reports

Back in Netsuite, once you have all of the records re-imported, navigate to Transactions > Employees > Imported Employee Expenses. Choose the Employee from the dropdown or select “-All-” and add more filters. Select the items you want to import, then click the “Add to New Expense Report” button:

Screenshot of Netsuite, Imported Employee Expenses page

From there, you can see the imported Expenses at the bottom of the page and submit the report:

Screenshot of Netsuite, Expense Report

A note about permissions

I created this report and can run it with the Administrator Role.

If you want to allow your users to access this report, you will need to add the

Additionally, update each users' Employee page under Access > Global Permissions > Imported Employee Expenses. I set this value to “Full”, but you might be able to just set to “Create”:

Screenshot of Netsuite, Employee page, Access tab, Global Permissions sublist


I wanted to write this up as a blog post because I think it's a good example of how you can use the CSV import feature to make your life easier.

I also wanted to write this down because Netsuite is overly complicated and there is no free training available. I'm sure someone else has had this same issue and is looking for a solution.

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