Why FileMaker is a better option than Excel

Posted by Justin Hesser on July 30, 2014

When most people think about core business software solutions, one of the key systems that comes to mind is Microsoft Excel. This popular spreadsheet software has been in existence since 1982 and has become synonymous with business reporting since 1988. If you were to walk into nearly any company and ask to see a sales report, there is a good chance that it will be handed to you in the form of an Excel spreadsheet.

While this seems to make the case that every business should be working hard with Excel, there are actually other systems that should be deployed that can make running a business much simpler. One of the most common is FileMaker.

A recent article from the Santa Fe New Mexican features an interview with David Jondreau, a FileMaker developer who previously helped organizations run through Excel. Because of the number of issues that companies were having trying to use basic spreadsheets as a core business system, Jondreau searched for a new manner of doing business and found it in the form of customer FileMaker development. This was a way to cut through the headaches and alleviate some of the struggle that companies face when using just spreadsheets.

"FileMaker is more than a glorified Excel program," Jondreau said. "FileMaker can produce more specific reports, such as a list of which customers frequent a business and what they buy. It's possible to generate such a report via Excel but it's challenging and requires a greater time investment."

He added that FileMaker can seem like it is nothing more than a lengthy list of unrelated items, but to an expert like Jondreau, it represents distinct graphics and rows, tables and categories that are easy to manage and do not overload users.

Small businesses are perfect for FileMaker

When it comes time to upgrade to a new software solution, many smaller organizations may be hesitant to make the the jump. Because they have limited resources, justifying any kind of investment is difficult. This especially true when words like "custom database" are thrown around. Company decision makers hear it and immediately start to hear a cash register ringing which causes them to hold the wallet tight.

However, FileMaker is a perfect solution for small businesses. It is an easy investment for a system that is user friendly and provides immediate benefits.

Jondreau said that his ideal client to work for is a smaller, local businesses. In just a few weeks and with a moderate investment, he is able to create a database from the ground up that meets the specific needs of a company and helps push operations to a new level.

Making this decision to invest in FileMaker can be easier said than done. However, there are quality software development firms out there that make the process easier. These organizations audit the existing solutions and business needs, before laying out a plan that specifically addresses these areas, while also adding benefits to other processes that were not expected at the beginning.