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Top 10 Uses for Excel in Business

Excel: One of the most versatile types of software out there.

1. Business Analysis
The number 1 use for Microsoft Excel in the workplace is to do business analysis. Business analysis is essentially using collected data to inform decision making. Businesses naturally gather data in their day-to-day activities, which may be data on product sales, website traffic, spending on supplies, insurance claims, etc.

2. People Management
MS Excel is a powerful way to organise information about people, whether they are employees, customers, supporters, or training attendees. Using Excel, personal information can be stored and retrieved efficiently. A spreadsheet row or column can be used for an individual record that may include information like name, email address, employee start date, items purchased, subscription status, and last contact.

3. Managing Operations 
While Amazon uses sophisticated custom software for operations management, MS Excel is an important tool for many smaller businesses (or parts of larger businesses). An advantage of Excel is that it’s relatively low tech, allowing it to be used by many people and without the risk of programming bugs.

4. Performance Reporting
Performance monitoring and reporting is a specialised type of business analysis that can be done effectively using MS Excel.

5. Office Administration
Office administrators use Excel to enter and store much of the data that’s subsequently used for accounting and financial reporting, as well as business analysis and performance reporting. Apart from record-keeping, Excel is useful in office administration for supporting day-to-day tasks such as invoicing, paying bills, and contacting suppliers and clients. It’s an all-purpose tool for keeping track of and managing office activities.

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6. Strategic Analysis
With respect to the use of Excel, strategic analysis is where business decisions are closely connected to the data and formulas on spreadsheets. You apply Excel to guide actions such as investments and asset allocations.

7. Project Management
Although project managers have access to purpose-built project management (PM) software, an Excel Workbook is often an effective alternative.

8. Managing Programs 
Excel is a good platform for managing programs. It can be adapted to handle the specific characteristics of a given program. And, because MS Excel is widely known, program records can easily be managed by multiple people and, when the time comes, handed over to a new manager.

9. Contract Administration
With Excel, many different contract management templates are available, and these can be adapted to suit the particular contract type or stage of the contract lifecycle.

10. Account Management
Account managers are generally required to be competent MS Excel users since they receive and need to maintain customer records. The job of an account manager is to nurture relationships with existing clients of the business. Key goals are to achieve customer loyalty and repeat sales.

Author: SAC Online

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