The Advantages of Excel for Budgeting SoftwareMaybe you have or haven't noticed, but it seems that every budgeting software vendor wants to replace the spreadsheet. Spreadsheets are still the number one tool of choice for collecting budgets and forecasts, as well as for reporting. There's a good reason for this and it has everything to do with their simplicity, versatility and availability. Simplicity - because almost every business person can use them. They are intuitive to use and because of their extensive use, there is always an 'expert' on hand should you experience difficulties with a particular function or feature. Versatility - because they are quite easy to set up. They require no IT support and they can be configured in minutes to collect forecasts, budgets or to report data from a general ledger. When it comes to reporting, nothing can beat the spreadsheet in terms of formatting and charting capabilities. Availability - is connected to their prevalence in business. There's always a copy of Excel available whether that be at work or home, and it's easy to share information by sending the sheets as email attachments.
Despite these advantages, the spreadsheet does have some issues. For example, to collect a budget often requires each department to have their version of the spreadsheet so they can see last years results or the latest forecast for comparison. This can be time consuming to prepare and difficult to manage if there are many departments. Then there is the problem of controlling users - making sure they use the right version; entering data as required and not adding or deleting rows; sending it back to the right address at the right time; and then collating the results from many sheets onto one master sheet for consolidation. These disadvantages can be so great that organisations face a dilemma; do they lose the simplicity, versatility and availability and buy an expensive specialised budgeting software solution or do they continue to 'grin and bear it' with what they currently have?
Fortunately there is now an alternative choice. With Financial Driver you can retain all the advantages of a spreadsheet but without the issues that are normally associated with specialised budgeting solutions. Financial Driver is simple to use. The complete administrator training course is just a few hours long, after which it can be used to automate the collection and consolidation of budgets and forecasts. The built in workflow capability ensures that everyone submits the data you want, when you want it. Financial Driver is versatile. In just a few minutes it can be reconfigured to collect a weekly forecast or load data from a general ledger for reporting purposes. It also makes sure that users only use the right version and can't change data once submitted. Financial Driver is always available. It's a modern cloud solution which means users only need an Internet connection and a standard web browser. With this they can access Financial Driver from any location and any machine. Once data has been approved Financial Driver automatically consolidates submissions, including any currency conversions, and makes them available as a 'cub' file that is easily interrogated by Excel. This allows users to create their own reports using the full capabilities of Excel, while retaining the security and power of a central database. If you're looking for a financial budget planner software solution, take a look at Financial Driver. You won't have to abandon your spreadsheet; instead you'll be able to take full advantage of what it offers while removing the disadvantages. Find all the features of Financial Driver on the Overview.