The Problem With Spreadsheets, Part 3: Finding Meaning

Spreadsheets can be handy for collecting little bits of data and turning data into colorful charts. However, even with dozens of spreadsheets and charts, it could take hours or days before you can find an accurate depiction of your financial health.

You can squeeze a lot of data into the neatly organized rows and columns of a spreadsheet. With a little know-how, you can even create formulas to calculate bits of data and link cells between spreadsheets. These formulas and links can be used to create useful charts to illustrate corporate sales data, for example, as well as sales data by region or product line. The problem with these elaborate spreadsheets; however, is the delay in data-sharing and the chance for mistakes with data-entry and manipulation. You can have your team inter-office mail important financial documents or email data, but paper can get lost in the shuffle and emails can get buried amongst the many emails you receive each day. Transferring data from one source into another introduces the risk for errors and formula or link mistakes can lead to serious mistakes.

Elaborate spreadsheets and charts can be useful, but you can find more meaning in your data when using an ERP solution. Powerful ERP solutions can provide built-in business intelligence and even offer the integration you want from your spreadsheets right out-of-the-box. For example, you and your team can enter data directly into NetSuite® ERP (http://www.netsuite.com/portal/home.shtml?partner=37257) and that data can be shared and used much quicker and more accurately than interoffice mail because it integrates across systems, removing the need for duplicate data entry and checks. Also, business intelligence and robust reporting features will eliminate the need for formulas or creative cell links which saves time and improves data accuracy. NetSuite dashboards are more effective than spreadsheet charts and easier to use. You can monitor key metrics and still dig deeper into the details behind those metrics without wondering whether the data is accurate.

Spreadsheets are handy and can be effective, but ERP can provide the business insight you are looking for with greater ease and accuracy. Contact Kraft Enterprise Systems, LLC for more information about finding meaning in your business data by using the right technology.

By Kraft Enterprise Systems, LLC, a NetSuite Solution Provider out of Tennessee