And what you should do about it...
With the explosion of SaaS software, it's hard to believe that Excel is still one of the most widely used pieces of business software on the planet. With over 750 million users, excel & its equivalents like Google Sheets are still going strong.
At Interloop, we believe spreadsheets (whether good or bad) are here to stay. Here’s why:
Spreadsheets are one of the few common languages in business.
Almost everyone has a basic exposure and understanding of how a spreadsheet works. While they may be “boring”, cumbersome, and difficult to manage - they allow everyone to get on the same page quickly without having to a technical resource.
There are also several other key benefits that spreadsheets provide:
* Power: Non technical users can build very powerful “apps” using spreadsheets. The people who are closest to the data or business process can be the one’s building the solution.
* Flexibility: Spreadsheets can tailored to fit your specific business needs, whether it’s the specific language, formatting, or data that applies to your business.
* Speed: Spreadsheets solutions can quickly be adapted to meet the current needs of the business.
What is missing in spreadsheets
While spreadsheets succeed in a lot of ways, there are still many shortcomings. Some of the features that spreadsheets lack are:
* Real Time Collaboration - while google sheets has made strides in this area, the ability for multiple users to update the same data is challenging.
* Simple Database Logic - items like relationships, unique ID’s, and other tools that keep spreadsheets from being scalable.
* Integrating with business applications & data sources - exporting business data to spreadsheets creates copies & mutations of the data which makes it difficult to understand the current state.
* Handling Big Data - anything over 1M rows can really be challenging to tackle with spreadsheets. Mature organizations often need advanced tooling to handle data of this size.
What to do about it
Embrace it! While business applications can give you tons of efficiency and automation benefits, there is often unique business data that ends up in spreadsheets. While Excel & Google Sheets may not be around forever, their key features of manipulating, combining, and making calculations of data will be around for a very long time.
The Interloop Way
At Interloop, we embrace the power & design of spreadsheets while also tackling their shortcomings. This means you can:
1. Create a common understand among users using our spreadsheet interface (along with our other awesome visualizations).
2. View data from both Excel Spreadsheets and Business Applications from a single location.
3. Mashup data across systems to gain insights & take action.
4. Tackle big data as easily as using a spreadsheet.
If you have any feedback, thoughts, or questions about Interloop we’d love to hear from you - reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org at anytime.