Microsoft Excel

Excel Holding You Back?

We all love Microsoft Excel. It is a fantastic tool – there is so much you can do with it and many users only scratch the surface of its full capabilities. This is understandable; after all, not every user will find a use for every feature. It’s your customer list, accounts, and bookkeeping package, it’s useful for stock monitoring and so much more.

Excel is Great, But…

Microsoft Excel is part of what was once Microsoft Office, now Microsoft 365. Released in 1987, became popular quickly and challenged some of the (then) industry leaders. Within about 5 years of its release, it became the industry standard spreadsheet. Today, it retains that honour for good reason.

However, no package is perfect – and most experienced users know that Excel has its problems and limitations. Sometimes, users and managers alike are too in love with this powerful spreadsheet programme that it’s hard see how it is holding back our business processes. We see three broad problems with Excel. Perhaps they currently affect your productivity?

The Three Main Problems Businesses Have with Excel

If Excel is impacting your employees’ workflow, or damaging productivity, it is likely due to any of these three problems:

  • Your spreadsheets have outgrown your PCs, making work sluggish and inefficient. Employees are frustrated by how much time it takes to carry out even basic functions. Excel is a resource intense package needing powerful processors and plenty of RAM
  • Excel is no longer a sufficient platform for either the size of the business or the scope of work for which you were previously using it
  • Inefficient use: your employees (and even their managers) aren’t aware of some of the more powerful functions that exist within Excel that would speed up workflow or the software’s ability to execute common processes

Do any of those sound familiar? Great, because each has a simple solution.

The Solutions to Each of these Excel Problems

Thankfully, each of the above issues have simple and effective solutions:

  • If the spreadsheets have outgrown your PCs and other packages are also slow, hardware upgrade is your best solution. Increase the RAM, upgrade the motherboard, or just order new computers
  • In the second case, you should seriously consider switching to a new ERP. Excel is great for most users but is easily outgrown when a medium business becomes a large business. NetSuite is a fantastic solution but there are other ERPs to consider
  • In the third case, you don’t need to upgrade anything other than your employees’ training. Excel is constantly evolving, and users need to evolve with it. Training from ten years ago, even five years ago, is no longer sufficient

All these solutions are cost-effective investments no matter the size of your business. Further, they will help you do more and remove the frustrations and lag you currently experience.


Do you think your businesses needs one or more of the above solutions? First Stop IT provides advice, software and hardware upgrades, and training. Contact us today to discuss.