Nobody uses an abacus to perform calculations anymore, so why is your office still using Excel spreadsheets for increasingly complex budgeting and planning calculations? 

What takes hours in Excel can happen in minutes with Axiom Higher Education software, saving your institution time and money while increasing the confidence in your data-driven decisions.

Here are 9 reasons you should make the switch.

1. Shhhh! 

Joe in custodial services makes what?! Compiling budget documents means inputting sensitive information, such as salary and benefit data. In Excel, you can either password-protect the entire spreadsheet or none of it, so anyone with access sees everything. 

Roles-based permissions in Axiom mean that users can access only the information they need to perform their jobs. 

2. So many cells, so many chances to mess up

Excel is error-prone, and even one mistake can throw a spreadsheet into disarray. Large budget files have many sheets, cells, and formulas, and each is dependent on the others to make a final calculation. And you know that Janice in accounting freezes at the prospect of changing such a complex document. You have to watch Jared, too, because he’ll type values into any available cell.

Reduce departmental anxiety by ditching Excel and using Axiom, where formulas and logic are stored securely in a centralized database. Mistakes may happen, but a keystroke error won’t take hours to investigate and fix.

3. Who’s inputting what?

Did James input his numbers before or after Janey? Who keeps renaming the %^&* file? Who has the latest version? These are all good questions that Excel simply can’t answer. Yes, there is some semblance of version control, but it’s difficult to tease out differences among versions. With Axiom, it’s easy to see a spreadsheet’s status in the input and approval processes, which saves you time and headaches. 

4. No spreadsheet shenanigans

We’ve all played spreadsheet hide and seek: calling, emailing, and walking around the office trying to find who has the spreadsheet and where it is in the approval process. 

Axiom’s sleek approval workflows make it easy to track each budget process step — from those who input data to those who approve it, right up the org chart. You always know where the budget is, which makes it easy to keep the process moving.

5. I can see clearly now

You’ve finally finished inputting your labor planning budgets, your tuition planning, and even your grants. How easily can you merge that interconnected data into a single spreadsheet so leaders can make accurate, data-driven plans? =If(answer<>”very easily”) you’re probably using Excel. 

Axiom supports information transparency across the institution, so people can view the information they are authorized to view in a single place.

6. Ch-ch-ch-changes

Assuming you have all the data in the right cells on the right sheets and your calculations are correct, can you easily adjust for changing conditions? Not with Excel.

Suppose your institution wants to give faculty a 3% raise for the next academic year. How would that impact the budget? So how about a 2% raise instead? How easy would it be to change the variables, ensure they’re correct, and run a new projection? Scenario planning works on the revenue side, too, with the ability to easily track projected tuition revenue based on various assumptions to enable leaders to make better decisions.

7. No data standards

The better question is, “What data standards?”. Everyone has their own way of doing things, and inputting data into someone else’s spreadsheet means treading carefully, lest a single value winds up in the wrong column. Is that header for Salaries or Expenses? Why doesn’t Jody do this the way that I do? Standardized spreadsheets in Axiom keep everyone is on the same page – literally.

8. Pity the reporting person

The university president needs an executive-level report for next week’s board meeting, and you are the reporting person. How’s your blood pressure now, knowing that it’ll likely take from now until the meeting to bring that data together?

With Axiom, you can generate ad hoc reports quickly and present data that meets your audience’s unique needs. Need the high-level detail for the executives? No problem. Want to drill down into a transactional level of detail for the budget analysts? Axiom has you covered there, too. 

9. Technology for the times

Your workforce is getting younger, and the younger they are, the less tolerant they are of poor workplace technology. Gen Z is twice as likely to say that as Boomers.  If you want to attract and retain the best and brightest, offering them the electronic equivalent of that abacus just won’t cut it. Axiom Higher Education Suite can bring your institution’s budgeting and planning processes into the 21st century. 

Ready to transform your budgeting & planning process?

See Axiom Software In Action