Home General Three Reasons Why Your Business Shouldn’t Rely On Excel Spreadsheets

Three Reasons Why Your Business Shouldn’t Rely On Excel Spreadsheets

by Olufisayo
Excel Spreadsheets

Excel may be one of the most well-known computer programs, used by a vast range of companies. The spreadsheet software has been around for more than 30 years and remains hugely valuable to businesses and industries. But that doesn’t mean that it’s without its issues.

A document that starts off as a simple list can quickly spiral out of control and is only made worse when you start adding users within your organization to collaborate on the document.

Here, we’ll go through some of the major problems that users face when working on Excel spreadsheets for their business.

Difficult to share

Although Excel is the go-to software for creating spreadsheets, it can quickly get messy when multiple users are using and editing the sheets at the same time. Unfortunately, this often can’t be avoided, as multiple departments may need to see data collated in one document.

For example, you may have a spreadsheet to track weekly sales figures that managerial staff and financial and sales teams will need access to.

Excel does offer shared workbooks, allowing multiple users to make edits as they need to. However, this can quickly get confusing, and it can be incredibly easy to lose years of work in a second. Furthermore, corporate spreadsheets may contain intellectual property that you simply can’t part with.

It’s also not worth creating new spreadsheets for each department to use, as this only will take up additional time and energy, leaving you to run the risk of sharing outdated data between departments if the correct figures haven’t been entered. One of the easiest ways to overcome this is by turning your Excel spreadsheets into web apps.

As explained by EASA, users are able to make full use of the spreadsheet’s functionality, “including any enabled VBA or macros” without inadvertently editing any original data or formulas. Managers can then update any critical figures as necessary, which the rest of the company will be able to view and use.

Minimal scalability

As a business grows, so does the need to create spreadsheets to keep track of everything, whether for forecasting, customer lists, or sales reports. It’s much easier for a larger spreadsheet to contain a broken formula or error than a small sheet.

If, for example, you want to search for customers within a specific age range, you would need to add filters to the relevant columns. However, this can be fiddly to complete in larger spreadsheets, and may even cause Excel to crash, which can ruin your workflow.

Instead of sticking with a spreadsheet for your growing business, it’s best to switch to using Structured Query Language (SQL), which is simply a way to create, manipulate, and update databases.

SQL is faster than Excel and is able to separate analysis from data, meaning that users can send the analysis separately in a text file, rather than sharing entire spreadsheets within departments, which can quickly get messy.

You can upgrade to any database program that suits your business—you just need to ensure that you migrate from spreadsheets to your database in stages, rather than doing everything all at once.

No audit trail

Using Excel spreadsheets doesn’t offer an audit trail, which means users can’t actually see or monitor who else is making edits or changes to the. As a result, shared spreadsheets can’t actually be trusted, as it’s not guaranteed that the figures are accurate, and also leaves spreadsheets susceptible to fraud.

It’s also likely that spreadsheets will suffer from general human error, such as missing out a single number or misreading columns and rows. But without knowing where a mistake came from, it can be difficult to know when it happened and how to correct it.

Instead, cloud-based programs like Google Sheets can allow you to keep track of where edits are being made, in real-time. It also records a history of the spreadsheet available to view whenever you need in order to make comparisons.

It’s incredibly similar in both appearance and functionality to Excel, so confident users should have no problems adapting to the new program. And as it’s cloud-based, it can be accessed remotely from anywhere with an internet connection, making it ideal for collaborations.

Author Bio :
Syna Smith is a Head of SEO at Backlinksmedia. She is an expert on link building.

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