For many years, Excel spreadsheets have been a staple in both professional and personal circles for organizing, calculating and presenting data.

They have been a universally functional tool for a variety of applications, such as keeping tabs on company financials and managing inventory.

There hasn’t been a single technological development that’s been able to replace spreadsheets as an office fundamental (other than ongoing updates from Microsoft Office and similar competitors like Google Docs), so spreadsheets remain in active circulation.

For many uses, spreadsheets are still valuable, but there are a number of inefficiencies that prevent them from being the powerhouses they once were. which is why we have put together a list of reasons why you should really stop using spreadsheets.

  • Spreadsheets are prone to errors

Nearly 90 percent of all spreadsheets have errors. This may be an improper formula, a misreported number, or inefficient formatting that leads to misinterpretations. Given your valuable or sensitive information, even a single mistake can be costly here, so it’s not worth the risk.

  • Spreadsheets get cluttered over time

Most spreadsheets start off very simple but as they grow in size and complexity they become difficult to manage

You end up with a large spreadsheet that is very difficult to maintain.

This becomes even worse if you have multiple people working on it. 

  • Limited or no automation

With spreadsheets, you can’t automate tasks or you have to automate them through complex scripts. For example, if you want to know when someone updates the status column, with spreadsheets, either it’s not possible or it requires complex scripts.

  • No custom roles and permissions for spreadsheets

As your database grows in size and complexity, you may find that you need an extra layer of control and protection. This is very important if multiple people have access to your database. With spreadsheets, it is impossible to set up custom roles and permissions.

This means that you need to give “Full Edit” permission to everyone who wants to make an edit which could lead to security risks.

  • No Notifications or Real-Time Updates

No notifications can hamper team collaboration. Unless your spreadsheet lives on the cloud or on an otherwise networked computer, you can’t get real-time updates. To get updates, you’ll need to manually email/copy-paste rows.

  • No Attachments

For completing a task, you may need to work with documents, presentations, brochures, graphics, or other files. But you can’t attach files within a spreadsheet! This is a severe limitation.

  • Prone to Security Risks

Because spreadsheets give access to more or less everybody on a team, instead of only to specific users, sensitive information may end up in the hands of people that are not entitled to see it. This is a major disadvantage, especially in a time where companies generate ever-growing amounts of data every day.

  • Scales poorly

As an organization grows, data in spreadsheet-based systems get more distributed; It is absolutely not advisable for a large organization to keep using spreadsheets.

What to Use Instead

So there are lots of good reasons to stop using spreadsheets, but that doesn’t make your needs go away. You still need to track inventory. You still need to report financials and chances are you need an easy way to transition your old materials into a new system. What could take the place of spreadsheets?

The simple answer is specialized software. There are thousands of types of tracking and management software out there, some of which cover many needs generally (like team collaboration software) and some of which narrow down into a focused niche (like accounting software). Your best bet is to choose a suite of software services, a la carte, that best cater to your company’s specific needs. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution out there (which is why spreadsheets are becoming obsolete), so shop around and consider your options carefully.

Instead of relying on spreadsheets to do the heavy lifting, look for a platform like Tigersheet that scales as you grow, providing secure features that improve collaboration, accountability, and accuracy so that you can move quickly and have an impact on your organization.

TIGERSHEET- A No-Code platform to build and automate apps 10x faster!