Pros and cons of Excel
If you’ve been in the business world for any length of time, then you understand how important a data entry tool like Microsoft Excel is to the workings of an office.
Excel has huge advantages in terms of its ease of use, but there are also major disadvantages to relying solely on Excel for your data storage and reports.
With a large amount of data entered into a spreadsheet, it’s inevitable that there will be trivial mistakes made. If you have to combine and adjust spreadsheets to get the information you want, you expand the opportunity for mistakes to be made along the way.
Lack of collaboration tools
Excel is not designed for sharing amongst users. When you’re working on budgets or forecasts or other group tasks that require the use of Excel, typically you will need info from different people in various departments. Many times the only way to get this info is to send files back and forth via e-mail. The process of consolidating data from these different files is very slow. This is an inefficient business practice and also opens up tremendous room for errors.
Inflexible business practice
There are several negatives to Excel that can impede the progress of your business. Spreadsheets become highly personalized documents when they are created and maintained by one person. This can make continuity difficult if someone comes in to replace a position. They may even have to start from scratch.
Doesn’t grow well
With any business, you are constantly striving for growth, and you need your data tracking tools to grow with you. Excel doesn’t do this very well. As your organization grows, so do the number of Excel spreadsheets, which spreads your information further and further apart. Excel works great for a one-time analysis of an aspect of your business, but as the data evolves it doesn’t tend to be able to keep up.
Excel does have several ways of seeing reporting, but customizing these graphs are not intuitive. There are times that you need to see the results of very specific data very quickly in order to make a decision.
Excel doesn’t support this, as you are generally unable to get solely the customized reporting that you need.
Although Excel is an easy spreadsheet tool that usually comes pre-loaded on your computer, you should consider adding an online dashboard tool for your business. Here you will be able to get a high-level overview quickly, allowing for quick decision-making and minimum distractions.
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