5 reasons to delete Exсel from your business. And to take Bitrix24
20 May 2019next article
Disclaimer: this text is not a negative publicity of table editors or their developers. Information is not recommended for reading to persons who do not intend to change their point of view on the organization of business processes in their business.
The goal of any business is to obtain the maximum possible benefit to its owners. There are many factors that can interfere with this: a difficult niche, high competition, questionable quality of the product or service that is offered to customers. But few people pay attention to seemingly simple everyday things that actually work against company employees. One of these is the use of the MS Excel spreadsheets table data editor (its local and cloud counterparts) in the area of customer interaction instead of a CRM system. On the Internet there is a lot of information on this issue, and even a lot of jokes. But if you look in detail, it’s not at all funny. To explain our point of view, as the CRM Bitrix24 integrator, we prepared five solid arguments on this topic.
Purpose of the software product
The first and most important thing: Excel (like Word or a plain paper notebook) is not a tool for managing or improving business. Even in the product description it is said that it is a program for recording and calculating mathematical and statistical data. This is, in principle, all that was worth saying.
Excel is really a powerful and multifunctional program in its industry. Unfortunately, it is a vivid illustration of the Pareto principle: “Less than 20% of users know about 80% of the program’s capabilities.” Or, if simpler, almost everyone who uses Excel knows only about a couple of functions that they are trying to adjust to their needs. At a decent level, the program is used by extras, academics and, rarely, financial workers. But not businessmen!
Thus, building your business processes on Excel is the same as hammering screws into the board with a hammer: something happens, but not at all the way it should be. And this is not even some kind of insider from our company: this is the usual statement of the purpose of the program.
But the purpose of the CRM-system is to provide quality relationships with potential and existing customers, automate business processes and increase the likelihood of repeat sales. Do you feel the difference?
“Okay, but the entrepreneurs somehow work in Excel and they manage to earn good money,” a skeptical remark may arise. Yes, they work. And often, especially in small business, it looks like this:
There are several (rarely one) documents in which different employees contribute something as the tasks are completed. There are filling in the fields of client databases (storing the database in Excel is a separate sore subject, but today is not about that), accounting of orders and their processing, reporting;
Since Excel is not intended for business — there are no uniform methods of work in this direction. Therefore, managers come up with (often copy) someone's templates for their business or, even worse, develop their own tables and explain to employees how to fill them out. In their turn new employees will learn from their predecessors and at this stage some of the information is lost or distorted.
The program interface, like every scientific tool, is not “user friendly”. Thus, you first need to get used to the appearance of the editor window, then to the features of working with him, and only then - to the work itself.
The list can be continued, but this is already enough to reflect on the effectiveness of the organization of operational actions within the company. Any CRM-system seeks to help its users to perform operations quickly, correctly and clearly. UI/UX is widely involved in creating the interface. And in the update “Bitrix24.Dubai” the functionality of prompts is refined, which explain almost all explicit fields, buttons, windows, etc. Of course, hints can be turned off, but at the early stage of using Bitrix24, these are simply necessary things that provide fast learning and competent use of extensive functionality.
The hell in using Excel spawned by file sharing is already over. It means, that everything has become much easier, but not to the very end. And so, the most terrible scheme: to work with a spreadsheet file you need to have the appropriate software on your computer, or mobile device. Versions before 2007 do not support the *.xlsx format (only *.xls), which now dominates everywhere. In order to transfer a file to another user or transfer to another device, you need to save all changes, somehow send the document file (by email, file sharing, via removable storage media, etc.) and pray that somewhere on this path something did not fail. In addition, you need to be careful to save the document in time and choose the correct name (and there are usually a lot of files).
With the appearance of cloud services, a lot of thing became much easier. Google spreadsheets accept any Excel format, provide access to a single document by multiple users from any suitable device, and remove the responsibility for controlling saves.
However, this is not an indicator with which Excel can try to compete with CRM. For example, both the cloud and on-premise versions of Bitrix24 provide access to documents stored in the system in more than 30 formats with the possibility of both viewing and editing. This is possible from a computer, tablet or smartphone without additional or special software. But, again — while it is a question of the fact that in CRM Bitrix24 it is easier to manage the contents of Excel files than in the spreadsheet editor itself.
It makes no sense to compare the capabilities of Bitrix24 and Excel for reasons from the first argument - these are tools for achieving completely different goals. Of course, Bitrix24 in its pure form will not count you automatic sum or will sort the lines alphabetically. However, the system can be improved (on-premise edition - almost on an unlimited scale) and, if necessary, any functionality can appear in your portal. But Excel itself just cannot:
To integrate with your site and automatically fill the data about clients, orders, payments, etc;
To control temporary costs of employees, to form the reports by hours and projects;
To provide the possibilities of communication with employees in single corporative space;
To create for your site, landing, Internet shop, form… and everything of this sort;
To manage the marketing campaigns;
To generate documents of office work;
To move forward the leads on the funnel of tunnel of sales…
Enough. Whatever you do in Excel, in Bitrix24 it can be automatically. The main thing is to understand that when doing business in Excel, almost everything is brought in by hands, which is spent a lot of precious time of the staff.
And about the money. Everything is simple here, but this issue should not be approached from the point of view of economy. For example, a license for Excel costs approximately 170 dollars; use in the cloud costs from 5 to 12.5 dollars per user in month. The minimum license for an effective commercial tariff Bitrix24 will be from $ 45 per month. And now let's compare how much Bitrix24, which is intended for this purpose, really helps to earn. Or on the other hand: how much will you not earn by spending time on primitively filling in tables in Excel, while competitors will develop their CRM?
Let's sum up!
Excel is an excellent program for statistics and computing, not intended for business development. Excel documents must be present in your case in the form of reports (such as exported reports from our Time and Project Report PRO application), price lists, summary statistical data and much more ... But not as a working tool for managers.
CRM Bitrix24 does not just replace your Excel with a proper and efficient system, but also qualitatively takes your business to the next level. And if you are still doing everything in Excel, let's just look at the possibilities of Bitrix24 by ordering a free demo from Avivi by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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