1. Small investment
The vast majority of businesses in the world already use Excel so the big investment has already occurred.
a. Companies still using Office 2007 or older are nearing the time when an upgrade to a newer version will be needed anyway and including Power Pivot will not make it massively more expensive. Choose Office 2013 Professional +, or if you are ready for the cloud, choose Office 365 +.
b. Companies using Office 2010 Professional already have full access to Power Pivot and Power Query, just download and install.
c. You should also invest in some training for those who will be building your data models.
2. Low maintenance
a. Building a data model will take some time, including trial and error and some testing. A well-built data model will never fail unless you are loading data into Excel manually.
b. Use Power Query to load data, it will save a lot of time down the road.
c. Power Pivot does not use cell references and this is the reason why I claim that it is low maintenance. The DAX formula language gives stability and eliminates the need to double and triple check formulas the way we have to in a standard Excel report. Once you have built a data model and tested it, it will run forever.
3. High yield
a. In regular Excel your analysts and report creators spend a lot of time verifying that the numbers are correct and that all formulas are operating as planned. In Power Pivot you do this once, as you build your data model, from then on all you have to do is load new data and refresh your model, a job that is “Gone in 60 seconds” (or less).
b. Time previously spent on verifying that the report is generating correct numbers can now be spent on improving the scope of the report, adding real value to the process.
c. Every manager I ever worked for has wanted the facts delivered in real time, and this has always been the source of speed-induced accidents. Power Pivot will deliver faster than anything ever built in regular Excel, and do it with no speed-induced errors.
4. Cloud yield
a. Real time reporting is actually available for those who can and will choose to run Office 365+ with Microsoft SharePoint and all the trimmings.
b. In the full-fledged cloud version you can have reports that refresh themselves automatically eliminating the human factor, making the facts available almost as the events occur.
c. It is even possible to use a Smart phone or a tablet to read these reports, thus shortening the distance between business event and report consumption by, I dare say, days!
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