Excel spreadsheets are a live saver for –
- Sales executives who want to record customer information and activity
- Keeping track of product sales
- Business leaders who want to calculate ROI
- Basic accounting purposes
- Scheduling organizational resources
The appeal for Excel lies in the fact that it can be accessed for managing the above tasks in a quick and ad-hoc manner. However, it’s cringeworthy for analysts and data scientists to rely on Excel for meeting today’s real-time challenges.
Excel was built to meet accounting needs, not for data wrangling.
Using Excel to deal with spreadsheet breaking Big Data scale raw data is akin to taking a knife to a gunfight. The average business analyst’s desktop doesn’t even have the computing power to process large data sets. It can take many hours simply to re-calculate a million rows and 20 odd columns.
Spreadsheets can’t handle the big data deluge
Although Excel has been the go-to tool for analysis, times have changed. Excel cannot compute, let alone visualize millions of rows of information. It is little surprise then that innovative cloud based solutions like Cloudera and Tableau have become very popular.
Businesses need to change their approach towards analytics and stop obsessing over data infrastructure. They can get the best out of their business analysts and data scientists if manually wrangling with data is taken off their plate.
DataScout has been developed for the sole purpose of simplifying big data analytics so everybody from analysts to business leaders can deliver their best. DataScout is hosted in the cloud so you won’t ever have to worry about IT infrastructure or technical know-how. It takes care of your data transformation, data governance, and data lineage challenges through best practices and automation.
Excel fails to provide what businesses need
Business users are the end consumers of analytics; they need tools that are simpler and less time consuming than Excel. Although businesses users can tap into their data science teams to collect, clean and analyze data in Excel from each of their performance critical systems, it doesn’t always work for them.
VLOOKUP and HLOOKUP are Excel functions used mostly for searching, merging and categorizing data. The problem with these functions is that it can drain all the computing power from an analyst’s computer and may even cause Excel to crash. Although one can still manage to get some basic data preparation done, analysts today are required to prep data on the fly.
Apart from being inefficient at preparing data, Excel makes it impossible to make the distinction between what’s important and what’s not. Just one of the many side-effects of manually scanning Excel spreadsheets for interesting patterns.
Lastly, automation is beyond the scope of Excel’s capabilities. Automatic data preparation is what will propel businesses of today to the next level. Data scientists and business leaders need to be able to make sense of their data, an area where Excel fails.
Visual tools like Tableau and Qlik have been of great help in that regard, but why settle for less when a self-service BI tool like DataScout can help. Not only can business analysts uncover the truth in the singularity created by DataScout, but they can support their hunches with built-in what-if analysis features and prediction models.
DataScout delivers what businesses of tomorrow want – it harnesses the most pertinent big data technologies to lend simplicity to analytics. Business users at each hierarchy can discover insights that redefine how business intelligence is consumed for assured profitability.
Avail our free trial to discover what going beyond Excel looks like.