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Information is power in business. Databases help companies gather, use, and secure information so they can make informed decisions.
Small companies often rely on spreadsheets to store key information and data to run their businesses. Spreadsheets are easy to use. Staff is often very familiar with the programs, so they require little additional training. Perhaps most importantly, spreadsheets can perform calculations that are often complex. However, spreadsheets cannot do everything that you might need for your small business. In most cases, an Oracle database might be a better fit for your business needs.
Effectively Using the Data in your Dataset
If you are using spreadsheets to track and handle the data for your business, you may find that you are using valuable time and resources just to develop reports or gain information that a database could gather for you in seconds. Databases are a great solution for anyone who is looking to increase their data efficiency, their security within their business, and report important data.
You may find when trying to work with your business’s data that the spreadsheets are not able to process data with each other. As an example, you have individual spreadsheets for sales, ordering, and inventory. If you need to gain information on appropriate ordering from each of these spreadsheets, it may take long hours to get the information that you seek. If you use a database instead, just set the parameters of the information that you would like, and a database can gather it almost instantaneously.
Databases allow you, as the user, to create thousands of records and be able to cross-check the information with a simple click of the button. A spreadsheet can handle 45,000 rows of data and may become slow to load the screens as more information is added, especially when scrolling and looking at multiple screens—that type of waiting wastes valuable time.
When you work with spreadsheets, typically only one person can work in a spreadsheet at a time and be able to save the original document. If you want to lock a specific table or cells of a spreadsheet, the cells will have to be formatted individually to determine who has access to edit the cells. While a spreadsheet can be locked, providing the password to the parties that need the information may ultimately lead to a security breach. A database will allow the administrator to grant specific permissions to specific users, track user changes, protect the data as a whole or just a dataset.
Information is power in business. With the right information, correct decisions can be made. Databases provide the right tool for reporting information. Within a database, you can develop tailor-made reports with customizable parameters, and if you need to share reports with someone who does not have access to your database, such as a client, then a report can be exported to a spreadsheet to easily share outside of your organization.