Sage Advice US

Is it time to shelve the spreadsheet?

When the first electronic spreadsheet user, an accountant in the Boston area named Alan Snyder, saw how much his life would change by switching from paper spreadsheets, he described himself as “flabbergasted.”

Not only did electronic spreadsheets decrease the sheer number of hours of work required by accountants, they also decreased human calculation errors, automated manual tasks and improved collaboration.

But today, software is making electronic spreadsheets obsolete for the same reasons paper spreadsheets became obsolete in the 1980s: accuracy, automation and collaboration.

In this graphic, we take a look at how the beloved spreadsheet is becoming a liability for businesses—and how software is swooping in to save the day: