When a business is first starting out, it can be relatively easy to grasp all the data you have. By simply putting it into a spreadsheet, you can track sales growth, trends, marketing efforts and some other quantifiable information. Typically, a smaller business is only using one or two solutions to manage their business and the data is all right there in front of them. However, as a business grows, so does the amount of data that needs to managed, and usually the number of solutions they are using to run the business. Eventually, all of the data is so spread out that trying to manage it in a spreadsheet becomes a full time job. Business intelligence software fixes that by gathering all the data across every system and displaying it in easy-to-digest graphs and charts.
If you are simply using spreadsheets to manage data, you can run into quite a few problems. Below are some common problems that businesses experience when they are trying to manual manage data.
Manually managing data could be a full time job. You’re gathering information from different managers, consolidating their data spreadsheets into one, trying to create formulas in excel that make sense and when it is all done, do you truly know if it was worth the time and effort?
When you’re manually creating spreadsheets, you run into issues with being able to share information and give real-time updates. The spreadsheets become static once created and don’t allow for much editing. Further, managers can’t input their information without possibly altering the whole meaning of the data.
It only takes a mistyping of one number to create spreadsheet error chaos. Imagine what one extra zero can do to your forecasted sales or one missed number can do to your profits. Research actually shows that 20 to 40 percent of spreadsheets contain errors, so if you’re manually keeping track of data, chances are the above scenarios are happening to you. When the data is automated by business intelligence software, these errors are eliminated.
Putting together all the information on your own in one long spreadsheets means that important information is hiding in plain sight. Decision makers lose their ability to find what they need to make smart choices. This data needs to be broken down into easily digestible.
Business intelligence software was created to help executives become better decision makers. If you are simply looking at numbers in a spreadsheet it can be really hard to analyze the information in front of you. If the data is spread across multiple systems, it can be hard to see how one area of the business is impacting the other. Simply put, it’s impossible to make smart and informed decisions when everything is in disparate systems and in an unreadable format. Business intelligence software fixes this problem and automates it.