When it comes to creating, managing, and controlling your supply chain operations, automation is the key. This ensures that your supply chain operations run smoothly, efficiently, and effectively in this age of doing more with less. Dozens of tasks that are being done with spreadsheets can now be turned into powerful analytical tools that would fit any supply chain department’s budget. Let’s look at the reasons why you should be doing away with some spreadsheet tasks and upgrading your tools.
The Spreadsheet is the New Swiss Army Knife for Business
As I’m sure you already know, a typical Swiss Army Knife has at least 20 uses (from bottle opener to screw driver) that make it a useful tool, but I’m sure you would agree that it can’t replace other tools, such as a hammer, drill, or saw.
It’s the same with spreadsheets; they have become the new Swiss Army Knife for business. Unfortunately, spreadsheets are hurting your productively if you think they can be employed for any business purpose they weren’t designed to handle. For example, we see healthcare organizations using spreadsheets for data analytics which creates errors that go unnoticed. We see healthcare organizations spending hours consolidating, modifying, and correcting data unnecessarily, and putting in an incredible amount of time in the long run with this time-sucking tool.
Many Tasks in Your Healthcare Supply Chain Require Specialized Tools
Don’t get me wrong, we have often fallen into this same spreadsheet trap because we were familiar with the Excel program and didn’t need training to get started. That’s the beauty of a spreadsheet, but also its Achilles heel. Since it’s easy to use we use it for everything we can think of, even if it wasn’t designed for the task at hand like value analysis, spend management, and utilization management, which require highly specialized tools for this exacting analytical work.
Greatly Improve the Success of your Supply Chain Operations with The Right Tools
Spreadsheets have their place in your supply chain operations for routine data collection, calculations, and sharing. However, to eliminate busywork, inexactitude, and guesswork, you need to electronically store your data in a secure environment, collect, classify, and enter data uniformly, easily update data to avoid multiple versions, and quickly eliminate costly errors as they occur. Simply stated, you need the right tool, at the right time, to greatly improve the success of your supply chain operations in this age of doing more with less. I’m sure you would agree!