How To Get Your Business Finances in Order Using Microsoft Excel
There’s a software solution for almost every business function, but for small companies, a basic Microsoft package could likely fulfill most technical operating needs. In particular, Microsoft Excel offers both simple and complex features that could satisfy most small business accounting requirements. From basic financial calculations, such as income and expense tracking, to more complex account statements, Excel offers capabilities that fulfill most functions without additional expense.
Spreadsheets could be considered Excel’s foundation and starting point for most accounting purposes. Spreadsheets can be designed for different functions, such as calculating sales revenue, tracking business expenses and monitoring inventory. Formulas programmed to analyze data can be set up on spreadsheets to calculate, compare, total and track figures to monitor and manage cash flow. While these functions are just a small portion of the software’s scope, and not very complex, many users might only be familiar with more basic Excel features. However, almost anyone can easily learn about the software in its entirety since there are numerous online tutorials and user guides available from reliable sources.
Data collected from spreadsheets can be used to create reports that most businesses might require to assess financial health. Figures harvested from spreadsheets can be copied or linked to populate a form, and embedded formulas can make business accounting calculations a snap. Excel simplifies this process even more by providing an assortment of free templates with ready-to-use forms such as profit and loss, income statements and balance sheets. These are reports commonly used by businesses and often required by banks for loans and lines of credit. Business owners can seamlessly monitor their firm’s financial health without complicated software or outside consultants.
Excel’s flexibility and functionality extend to add-ins, which can provide advanced capabilities and could be helpful to a growing business. There’s a diverse range of add-in choices, depending upon a company’s needs. For example, the chart labeler function helps to improve data readability, and a forecast wizard can predict values for categories such as product sales. There’s even a training and tips add-in to help users easily maximize Excel’s capabilities.
The scope of Excel’s functions positions the software as a reliable workhorse and an important asset for small businesses. The program’s business accounting reach can extend from basic bookkeeping, such as tracking income and expenses, to complex financial statements. Even as a business grows, Excel can adapt by supplementing its functionality with add-ins. With the need for small businesses to maximize every dollar to maintain and operate a company, it makes sense to forego expensive software in favor of a program that is a proven multitasker.