Excel sales forecasting spreadsheets
Excel is a superb personal productivity tool. But it was never designed as a multi-user solution or as a purpose-built sales forecasting
solution. Applying Excel to a requirement it was not specifically designed to meet invariably leads to:
Heroes or Villains?
- functional compromises
- lack of multi-user access
- significant additional manual maintenance (e.g. adding new products, customers, consolidating) just to keep the system up to date and resilient.
- high risk of potentially damaging undetected formula etc. errors. ( "The majority (>90%) of spreadsheets contain errors" : http://www.eusprig.org/basic-research.htm. See also: http://panko.com/ssr/Audits.html for extensive summary of operational spreadsheet error research.)
Sales forecasting is a business-critical process. Inaccurate forecasts cost money.
The simple fact is that using Excel for sales forecasting is a potentially costly compromise. A compromise on functionality, on forecaster aids, on multi-user support, maintainability and scaleability. In fact, while it is great for many purposes, especially as a personal productivity tool, it is far from ideal when applied to multi-user business sales forecasting activities.
The limitations of Excel for your sales forecasting solution are:
Here is a list of some of the features you get, completely 'out of the box', with Prophecy™. Whilst it's true that some of these features can be replicated in Excel, with ingenuity, the simple fact is that Excel soon runs out of steam when it comes to delivering these items in a maintenance-free, robust and scaleable way and in combination.
Data Perceptions has published a detailed white paper comparing forecasting spreadsheets using Excel and sales forecasting using Prophecy. It highlights the unexpected complexity of any home-grown solution compared to the 'battle-proven', professional forecasting software solution provided by Prophecy. Please click the 'whitepaper' button below to download your copy.
Telephone 01494 785574 (UK) to talk to a Prophecy expert now!