Newsletter Masthead
May 2009

Microsoft Excel is NOT the Answer

 Almost everyone has Microsoft Excel on their computers and many use it for situations that Excel was never intended to be used for.  But what happens so often is that people have a hammer like Microsoft Excel and each business need begins looking like a nail.

Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet application that works well for managing some forms of numerical data and managing some simple lists.  Now people have even created macros to manipulate the data within its cells and continue down the path of more and more advanced macros instead of asking the question…”Should we try to do this in Microsoft Excel?”

Many times the answer is NOOOOOOOOOO.  However, companies don’t want to spend money to have a custom application developed, although they are not taking into account how much this Microsoft Excel application is costing their organization.

Many companies need to manage revisions of their data.  This becomes a problem with Microsoft Excel because Excel was not built with very much revision control, hence, people rename the file to latest revision and communicate with those involved what is the latest revision.  This DOES NOT WORK.  You can never be certain you have the latest revision.  How much would it cost your organization to use an outdated revision?

Many companies need to store data over time.  This is a good use for a database and Excel is not a real database.  However, not everyone has a database on their desktop and even fewer know how to use that database.  Hence, these people TRY to use Excel, maybe begin adding macros for these situations and introduce risk into your organization and a potential drop in productivity for the wasted time spent trying to manage these worksheets and applications.

Many companies need to store product and Bill of Material (BOM) data.  Many times this is complex data that is linked to other information, this information is known to change over time and the product information or BOM is critical to manufacturing.  Using Excel introduces tremendous risk to your organization because many links get broken within Excel causing formulae not to work, you may not be certain you are working off the latest revision and errors can get introduced due by people that have access to these files.  How much would it cost your organization if you made a product lot off of a bad BOM…$10,000, $50,000, $100,000 or more?

Don’t get me wrong, Microsoft Excel is a powerful software tool and can be the answer for numerical data manipulation, but Microsoft Excel is NOT the Answer for many other situations that it is being used for.

Contact us, if you have a Microsoft Excel application that is:

1) not fully meeting your needs
2) difficult to manage
3) able to be changed by the wrong people

We turn these Microsoft Excel files into secure applications that fully meet your needs and are easy to manage.

Ben Moore
Agent Technologies, Inc.

Continue to blog about this article at:


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In This Issue
Microsoft Excel is NOT the Answer
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Manufacturing Statistics May 2009
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Manufacturing Statistics 
1) Manufacturing Output decreased 1.7%in March 2009 with durable goods down 2.4% and nondurable industries fell 1.0%. 
Source: Federal Reserve Board
2) Manufacturing Employment fell by 149,000 jobs in April 2009.  
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
3) Manufacturing Trade Deficit in February 2009 decreased $10.1 billion, or 21.5%, to $36.9 billion.   Sources: Census Bureau, Bureau of Economic Analysis
4)Manufacturers' New Orders in March 2009 decreased $3.2 billion, or 0.9%, to $345.3 billion.      Source:Census Bureau
5) Manufacturers' Inventories decreased $4.1 billion, or 0.8 %, to $524.8 billion. Source: Census Bureau
Agent Technologies, Inc.
Phone:  513-942-9444
Fax:  513-942-9446
Founded in 1995, Agent Technologies, Inc. provides e-Commerce Solutions, Business Reporting Solutions, e-Business Strategy Development and Agent Based Systems. We specialize in comprehensive eCommerce 4 Manufacturing (sm) Solutions through our manufacturing consultants and software applications. Try xRP - our online business productivity tool for CRM/ERP.  FREE 30 Day Trial!
Agent Technologies, Inc. | 8216 Princeton-Glendale Road, Suite 191 | West Chester | OH | 45069