4 Reasons Why Business Owners Should Learn Spreadsheets

Business Owner working on spreadsheet

Growing your business is essential, as is keeping the daily running of your operations under observation, and Spreadsheets can assist in both of these areas.

You would be able to get away with hiring someone that knows how to use spreadsheets already. Still, as the owner of your business, learning spreadsheets will help you to maintain an understanding of the inner workings of your company as you begin to scale into the big leagues.

Here are 4 of the top reasons business owners should learn spreadsheets.

To Store Data

There are plenty of governmental requirements for keeping track of data for your business. Whether it is something as simple as keeping track of throughputs for tax or making sure your company abides by laws such as HIPPA, spreadsheets can store this data.

You’ll also need to store plenty of data types for the benefit of your business. Expenses, sales, and inventory can easily be stored on a Google Sheets document or Microsoft Excel sheet.

Data stored on spreadsheets can range from simple non-numerical lists to complex formula-ridden pages of data.

Your business could use a range of templates that already exist on the internet or create its own to use repeatedly to show stored data to your staff and yourself. Of course, once you become familiar with how the template works.

It’s also reasonably easy to just copy and paste rows or columns in each sheet that will maintain any formulas used for the new section. Spreadsheet software has become more and more intuitive over the years. Even more complex formulas using the if function should copy and paste easily.

Data entry can become a straightforward job with some training. A few employees could churn out huge chunks at a time, or you could sprinkle some extra responsibility into your management team to keep on top of the use of spreadsheets.

Either way, knowing how to read and manipulate spreadsheets yourself will help you keep a handle on your daily business.

To Run Business Analysis

Analyzing the inputs and outputs of your business will help you understand areas that need improvement.

Your business will naturally gather data in its day-to-day operations whether that be website traffic, product sales, spending, or anything else.  If you keep track of them with Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel, you can quickly produce weekly, quarterly, or annual reports to help make decisions about where to take your business next.

Data analysis in spreadsheets often entails creating action plans for investments and asset building. This analysis is often done with formulas to transfer the raw data into more digestible mediums.

Spreadsheets make it simple to create easy-to-read tables, graphs, and charts to convey information to your staff.

Your entire management chain doesn’t need to understand the initial spreadsheet. But, using the analysis functions in the document can be an excellent way to build and portray the vision for the future of your business to them.

To Share Data

Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets are cross-compatible, and they are also two of the most used business programs in the world.

Their sheets are easily shared through links or can be emailed directly to another user. This means they both make it incredibly easy to share data and documentation between businesses or departments.

There are plenty of other programs that also keep track of business throughputs, staff, etc. But, the compatibility and usability of those are severely limited by comparison.

Since both of the leading spreadsheet programs are also available as online documents, they are effortless to collaborate on. In fact, you could have several employees working on a single document at any one time. All while you are monitoring the activity.

Spreadsheets Aren’t Going Anywhere

Microsoft Excel has been around since 1985 and has enjoyed widespread use ever since. Although Google Sheets has taken a huge chunk of the market share, these programs work well together.

It is implausible that these programs will be superseded any time soon as so many businesses rely on them for their operations.

Learning to use spreadsheets is a lifelong skill that will be relevant for the foreseeable future. So, gaining an understanding of how they work will benefit the way you run your business for the long term.

Which Spreadsheet Program Should You Learn?

The skills you learn from either of the big two programs should translate to the other fairly easily. Even if they differ a little, there are still plenty of guides online to help you out if you get stuck.

About Carson Derrow

My name is Carson Derrow I'm an entrepreneur, professional blogger, and marketer from Arkansas. I've been writing for startups and small businesses since 2012. I share the latest business news, tools, resources, and marketing tips to help startups and small businesses to grow their business.