Spreadsheets have been around for a long time – before our phones were smart and the internet was mainstream. By now, we’ve become so used to opening up a spreadsheet and using it to store our plans, budgets, timelines, schedules and lists, we don’t ever stop to question why we haven’t moved on.
This isn’t to say spreadsheets don’t fundamentally fulfill their purpose of holding our lists or schedules neatly in cells. They do. However, spreadsheets are rife with deficiencies that can compromise good forecasting. Obstacles and errors generally start to arise in the following situations:
- When a lot of information is held within a spreadsheet
- When the data changes frequently, based on input from different sources
- When everyone needs to view the same information
- When data integrity is relied upon for decision making
In other words, whenever spreadsheets are used in the workplace.
The successful delivery of construction projects relies on confidence. Confidence in data accuracy, confidence in real-time updates and confidence that you have all the insights available to make well-informed decisions. Spreadsheets aren’t dynamic enough to offer this level of confidence, but 91% of construction firms still use them to plan, budget and forecast. And without full confidence in the data that lives in your spreadsheets, your forecasting will be inconsistent at best, and materially off target at worst!