You can analyze and compare numbers from different sources and angles; you don’t just do that in spreadsheets. Here you will typically copy data from your ERP and financial system to the spreadsheet and enrich it using L and V lookups with BI reporting.
It’s a manual, time-consuming, and incredibly error-prone process.
At the same time, combining data from different sources and cubes is difficult, and the figures are rarely connected across the business because each department works in its spreadsheets.
In the end, this means that you end up with simplistic analyzes that do not give an adequate picture of reality.
1) You get rid of a sea of spreadsheets.
You probably already have several different spreadsheets in different versions.
The larger your organization, the more different spreadsheets, and versions there are.
But when the day comes when the spreadsheets must be collated or – worse still – put together unnecessarily, many resources must be used to get the cut-and-paste work going.
In contrast, the Business Intelligence tool ensures that you collect everything in one analysis, from which the individual employee can find their way around and provide input with a few clicks. It saves you a lot of time.
2) You minimize the risk of incorrect entries.
You have probably experienced sitting in a meeting where you discuss the validity of the analysis rather than the content of the analysis.
Analysis in spreadsheets can easily contain many errors because they require manual entry and handling. It creates errors in formulas, references, and the like.
With Business Intelligence tools, you minimize the manual handling of the data.
First of all, this means you save a lot of time. But the risk of errors is also reduced, ensuring valid and fair analyses.
3) Your data is automatically updated on a daily or hourly basis.
Although you can automate parts of getting data into spreadsheets, you have to manually organize the data and ensure it lands in the right places.
This often leads to you only following up on critical key figures weekly, monthly or quarterly.
A major advantage of Business Intelligence software is that the data can be updated automatically daily and hourly. This makes it easy to follow the business in real-time, so you can act dynamically and agilely on fluctuations and opportunities.
The automation also ensures that you save time on reporting. For example, you don’t have to lift a finger in connection with the monthly reporting, which runs completely by itself.
4) You get more dynamic analyses
In spreadsheets, you can visualize your data with beautiful graphics.
But what do you do if you want to add a column or have doubts about whether the numbers have been calculated correctly?
You probably want to drive on with what you have or start over because it’s damn hard to change the data visualization once it’s made.
With a Business Intelligence tool, you can turn and turn your analyses as you like with a few clicks.
For example, from the chrome-plated overview in your dashboard, you can easily dive into the numbers and examine the individual areas in more detail.
5) You become independent of the spreadsheet shark
As soon as more advanced functions in spreadsheets need to be used, many often go to a colleague in the organization who can work magic in spreadsheets.
It is problematic because the person in question will easily appear as a bottleneck.
This may mean you must wait to analyze until the spreadsheet shark has time to help.
The advantage of BI tools is that it is much easier to transform data into the desired knowledge because individual users can turn the analyses as they wish. At the same time, it is much easier to see how formulas and calculations are set up when a single person has not developed control of everything.
6) You can streamline the budgeting process
Spreadsheets are, for many companies, the obvious tool for budgeting.
But it has its weaknesses – particularly in the budget process itself.
Among other things, it is a challenge to consolidate and collect budgets from several different spreadsheets.
First of all, it involves a considerable amount of typing work. At the same time, the risk of mistakes being made in the budgets increases, so they are difficult to count on.
With BI tools, in which a solution for budgeting is integrated, you can overcome these problems, and it provides a faster, easier, and error-free budgeting process.