Six reasons why a management program is better than Excel

Love it or hate it, Excel is here to stay. But is Excel the best option for managing your equipment? We think not. Excel certainly has its limitations, some which can halt your business operations or simply make your operations more expensive because they take more time to execute.

Read more about why an equipment maintenance and management software program is better than Excel.

1. Excel does not understand changes to the regulatory environment or new legislation in your industry

Rules and regulations are constantly changing, and new ones are being added. Does Excel automatically adhere to updates from regulators or from new local, national or international legislation? No. Can it be programmed to suit your industry needs and seamlessly updated over time? No.

Excel can be a rigid, static tool – but the regulations and legislation in your industry aren’t static. You need a flexible tool which works with your unique business needs.

2. Excel is an error prone tool

Excel makes it easy to make data entry errors and makes it difficult to detect those errors. Especially over time. We’ve all been there – incorrect cell formulas, copy and paste errors and broken links – flaws along the way which make obtaining, interpreting or validating data a huge challenge. These normally aren’t intentional but can be quite difficult to detect, especially when Excel is used over time or with a large amount of data.
Using Excel for your equipment maintenance and management needs also leaves your business vulnerable to crashes, viruses and hardware failures. Imagine a data crash or losing your laptop (and your document is saved locally to your laptop). Also imagine, your spreadsheet gets lost – what do you do next? Excel cannot help you once the data is gone.

Storing spreadsheets in a shared location means data validation and security can be an issue too. Do you really want to take the chance that your data is incorrect, or you cannot locate certificates exactly when you need them (or when a safety inspector needs them)?

3. Excel cannot store safety certificates, certificates of conformity or user manuals

Excel may be able to suit some of your data maintenance and management needs, but it cannot store PDF copies of your safety certificates and certificates of conformity. Nor does it have the capacity to store user manuals for each piece of equipment.

Using an all-in-one equipment data maintenance and management program means all data, all certificates and even user manuals for each piece of equipment is stored all in one place – at one time. This information is accessible to you, your clients or anyone else you choose by easily scanning a QR-code or RFID tag.

4. Excel cannot track your data in real-time

Spreadsheets are useless at keeping up-to-the-minute summaries on your data or equipment information. This is especially true if maintaining Excel is normally delegated to non-technical admin staff or an offsite manager who may not physically be on your job site. Using Excel means tracking your data in real-time becomes nearly impossible.

The time lag between what happens in real time and what is tracked in Excel can render your business less effective.

5. Excel does not allow you to collaborate throughout the value chain

What a dream it would be if your suppliers could do some of your data entry tasks for you, right? Imagine receiving a data file from your supplier which could simply be uploaded into a software program, instead of having to set off days, weeks or sometimes months to manually enter information into Excel. Talk about efficiency!

Your dream is a reality when you use an equipment maintenance and management program because your suppliers can digitally deliver accurate documentation at once. And in turn, your business can do the exact same for your suppliers – or even your customers. Excel simply cannot do that.

6. Excel does not easily help you adjust to the needs of your business or predict future needs

Excel can get too detailed, make it difficult to maintain a clear overview or simply not reflect what is relevant for your unique business. This makes it difficult to manage customer demand in the present or predict future needs. Using an equipment maintenance and management program is a robust but less complex option to the stress which Excel can bring to your operations.


When you use an equipment maintenance and management software program, you can be sure that your data and documentation are accurate, consistent and complete. Also, you are assured that your data and documentation have met all the necessary legal requirements. You can also share that information with key stakeholders, 24/7 – regardless of their geographical location or stage in the value chain. You have complete control over which information is included in your documentation and how you use it to predict future needs.

Want to hear more about how an equipment maintenance and management software program like Onix Work can add efficiency to your business operations? Contact us on our contact page or via email at

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