Written by John Barbanas.
- you can download and use some of these spreadsheets for free (eg the LibreOffice Calc and the OpenOffice Calc can be downloaded freely from the Internet)
- it is very easy to know the basics of it and therefore you can start using it immediately without much effort
- it gives the user absolute freedom to do whatever he or she likes, eg design the layout exactly as he/she wants, choose fonts and colors, etc
- it allows multiple people to share and use the same spreadsheet and, in a very small degree, to cooperate, e.g. Joe can open, use, save and close the spreadsheet, then Jane can open it and work on it also (note that two people cannot work on the same document simultaneously)
- in case you have someone in your team with advance knowledge of the spreadsheet application, you can even create functions and macros that can automate some labor intensive tasks.
- as the volume of your work increases you will have to spend more and more time to finish your work. Paying overtime will be the "normal" case
- you will notice that you must write the same information (eg the details of the Vessel and/or the Customer) two, or more times in two or more different spreadsheets
- searching will be more time consuming. Reporting will become harder to prepare
- mistakes will occur more often from one or more people that cooperate on these Excel sheets. Tracking who made the mistake will be virtually impossible.
- to minimize your business risk, you will need advance reports that you will not be able to take out from your software
Your comments or feedback about the ideas illustrated above is always welcome!