Steven Hager

Excel vs. Metics: five disadvantages of using Excel for financial scenario planning


In this blog, you will read about the disadvantages of using Excel for financial scenario planning. While Excel is a popular tool for financial analysis and calculations, it also has limitations and drawbacks. We outline five significant drawbacks of Excel, along with a suitable solution!

Drawback 1 – Error-proneness of Excel

We all know that nagging uncertainty when using complex Excel models: are all the formulas correct? Are there hidden errors that could influence our results? Even the smallest mistake can have significant consequences.

Several studies have shown that nearly 9 out of 10 Excel spreadsheets contain errors, with almost 15% being major errors. These statistics are concerning for professionals who rely on Excel for crucial calculations and decisions.

Building a financial model in Excel can feel like assembling a complicated puzzle. But what happens when we discover that some pieces don’t fit, or worse, are missing? The impact can range from minor inconveniences to substantial financial losses.

Metics helps you avoid making these mistakes. With pre-programmed functionality and No-code modelling, you never have to worry about introducing an error. This allows you to focus on what really matters: value creation.

Drawback 2 – Too many spreadsheets and loss of overview

Have you ever felt like you’re entangled in a web of overly complicated Excel spreadsheets? Cells, formulas, tabs, references… it can all become overwhelming quickly.

The challenge becomes even greater when the overview is lost. Navigating through complex spreadsheets takes time and makes us vulnerable to errors. How often have we asked ourselves, “Where does this number come from?” or “What happens if I change this cell?”

Instead of Excel helping to create clarity and insight, it sometimes feels like we’re sailors trying to navigate a stormy sea. We’re constantly correcting our course and avoiding obstacles while trying not to lose sight of our destination.

With Metics’ simple interface, you always keep your focus on that destination: creating value. Our One-view dashboard brings peace of mind, ensuring you always have an overview with all the critical parameters at hand.

Drawback 3 – Highly time-consuming

Spreadsheet trivia: Did you know that an average professional spends about 18 hours per month searching, correcting, and verifying Excel data? If we extrapolate this to a whole year, that’s over 5 full working weeks!

For scenario planning, where accuracy and efficiency are crucial, this delay can not only affect productivity but also the quality of work and ultimately the end result for clients.

The continuous process of inputting, correcting, validating, and re-entering data is like being on a merry-go-round. It may seem fun and colorful at first glance, but after a few rounds, you realize you’re just going in circles without making progress.

With Metics, that’s a thing of the past: our Two-way® Technology allows you to quickly gain reliable insights. This frees up more time for real value creation. Alternatively, you can use the saved time to create some extra peace of mind.

Drawback 4 – Discrepancy between top-down decision-making and bottom-up information

In organizations, we often notice a discrepancy between how decisions are made and how information is collected. From the top, the course is set, while from the bottom, insights and information are gathered, telling us whether we are on the right track.

How do we ensure that the top-down goals and strategies align with the bottom-up collected data and insights? How do we ensure that our models not only reflect what we want to achieve but also what actually happens on the shop floor? A question from above can quickly lead to a new, time-consuming iteration at the bottom, where the logic of a company may get lost.

Imagine building a bridge from two sides. If both sides are not perfectly aligned, they won’t meet in the middle, resulting in an unfinished and unusable structure. The same goes for our strategic decision-making and data analysis: if they are not well-aligned, it can prevent us from reaching our goals.

Metics’ Two-way® Technology makes it possible to make top-down data adjustments while fully respecting the bottom-up logic and bottlenecks. The impact is immediately visible, preventing iterations and increasing efficiency.

Drawback 5 – Limited collaboration and version control

Collaboration is key to success in almost every organization. Sharing information, ideas, and feedback leads to better decisions and stronger results. But what happens when the tools we use limit us instead of supporting us in this crucial process?

For scenario planning, we often rely on Excel. While it can be a powerful and flexible tool, it has limitations when it comes to sharing and collaborating. How often have we dealt with conflicting versions of the same model or struggled to understand a colleague’s adjustments without direct communication?

Using Excel in a team is like trying to play a symphony together but having only the sheet music for a solo piece. The resulting dissonance in our financial symphony can lead to misunderstandings, errors, and inefficiencies – the opposite of the harmonious performance we want to achieve.

The visual interface and ease of working with Metics allow for interactive collaboration with stakeholders, whether they are financial professionals or laymen. Everyone can get involved.