Once a proper spreadsheet reporting tool is created, management still has to ensure the data is secure. Whenever you start to share a spreadsheet, you risk unavoidable errors.
No programmer, no matter how expert, can anticipate and prevent every possible user action that may cause an error in a spreadsheet.
Fortunately, today's technology enables you to take your spreadsheet and convert it into a web-based application so that your spreadsheet is available to anyone with an internet connection. Here are the advantages of doing so:
The spreadsheet can be used by multiple users.
Data can be separated from the spreadsheet, meaning you don't need to use a database back end program to store the data.
Access can be better controlled.
Users can be restricted to inputting data and retrieving data using a spreadsheet interface. This protects the integrity of the spreadsheet data and formulas.
Version control is more secure.
You can have a custom management reporting system at a lower cost, without having to try to adapt an expensive, industry-standard software to your company's requirements.
To save costs and ensure a smooth transition to a web-based application, you should first do the following:
Review your current spreadsheet inventory. Do any overlap? Do any utilize the same data set?
Determine if any spreadsheets can be eliminated or merged into others to make your reporting process more efficient.
Automate any spreadsheets that are currently being updated manually.
Take a look at your data that is the source of your spreadsheet report. Have you collected all the data you need? Have you broken down your data into the smallest possible data point? Have you normalized your data so you can more easily scale your reports as necessary?
There are many companies on the internet that offer a service to convert your spreadsheet to a web-based application. You'll want to look at each to see exactly what they offer to ensure they offer a solution that meets your needs.