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Why you should not use Excel to create your schedules

Excel is a great tool, no doubt about it. But sometimes you just have to recognise its limitations and that you can get much further with other solutions.

If you still make your timetables in Excel. As a company, you probably started in Excel because it made the most sense at the beginning. It may have been easy to start with, but now you may find yourself in a situation where Excel cannot do everything you want it to and is too much of a hassle to work with.

If that is the case, you should consider switching to scheduling software that is not only much more flexible than Excel, but also much easier to work with.

Here we give you some good reasons to drop Excel and switch to a simpler and more efficient scheduling system.

Excel requires knowledge

Excel is not suitable for everyone, and it requires training and experience to work with the programme. Therefore, if you have a new employee who will be responsible for the schedule, it is often necessary for this employee to take an Excel course before he or she can understand and edit the schedule in the desired way.

This makes the use of Excel extremely inefficient and expensive. Especially if the person responsible for keeping the schedule changes.

Excel is difficult to share

Although there is now an online version of Excel, Excel is basically not designed to be shared. So if your employees need access to your schedule, they must first obtain an Excel licence (which is not cheap) and either gain access via email or log in and view the Excel sheet online.

Before this can even be considered, you need to set permissions on cells and sheets yourself, and if you're not 100% sure what you're doing, you risk opening up your schedule for editing by people who shouldn't really have access to it.

Difficult to update

If you share your schedule by printing it out and handing it to employees or share it in a group chat, you will undoubtedly face a lot of hassle when it comes to schedule updates. To keep track of these updates, emails and text messages will probably have to be sent.

Excel becomes outdated

New updates for Excel are constantly coming out, and it is not always the case that a spreadsheet created in older versions is compatible with newer versions.

You may therefore have to re-create your grid in the new version of Excel if the grid you were previously using does not work with the new version of Excel.

Excel is not as cheap as you think.

Many people associate Excel with a cheap solution for their schedule, but if you take into account the time you spend in Excel and the effort involved in using Excel as a schedule, it may not be so cheap at all. The Excel programme itself costs around €8 excluding VAT per month per user for companies.

If more than one person has to manage the roster, the price can be multiplied by this number of employees.

Excel is not working properly on your mobile

If you are on the move and need a quick overview of who is currently at work, Excel is almost impossible to keep track of unless you pull out your computer.

With the right scheduling software, this is not necessary at all, and you can get a quick overview on your mobile. Everything from timesheets, time registration and shift changes are made easy.

If you are most familiar with Excel, you can also use our schedule template in Excel.

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