CFO’s: It’s time to say goodbye to the spreadsheet
While Excel is a great tool for ad hoc analysis, storage of small data sets and creating simple models, it is not designed for data sharing and collaboration.
The effects of using spreadsheets for data sharing with large groups or other tasks they are not designed for can be more damaging than you realise.
A recent survey conducted by Visma revealed that Excel is the most commonly used tool for CFOs within the nordic markets. It also revealed that CFO’s underestimate the importance of standardisation and automation.
CFOs often demand more from Excel then it is capable of. They are simply not aware of its limitations in regards to data sharing and collaboration or of the alternatives.
Despite Excel’s reliability as a data aggregator, it has shown time and time again that it is an error-prone and fragile planning system. Its usefulness as a data tool is often mistaken for competence in planning and analysis.
As CFO, it is natural to rely heavily on Excel and it is important to acknowledge that spreadsheets will never, and should never, be abolished entirely. However, it is important to recognise that engaging less with spreadsheets and more with your business, will help you to produce more reliable results in a more timely manner.