Why you shouldn't use Microsoft Excel for Legal Entity Management

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At Corporify, we’ve set out on a mission to empower legal professionals with technology and processes required to fuel modern corporate governance. Transitioning from a collection of spreadsheets to data-driven entity management allows legal teams to collaborate intelligently rather than through email. The benefits of a modern legal entity management software system can have a significant impact on reducing the risk burden on legal professionals.

What’s the problem?

Over 70% of organizations depend on spreadsheets for collecting critical business data across the majority of their business units. And the same goes for our customers: over 80% come to us after having used Microsoft Excel to manage their legal entities.

The genius of Excel for entity management is that it’s fairly easy to use and there are tons of free templates that exist online to get you started. Besides, it’s software used by most organizations globally, with Microsoft being the preferred corporate software supplier for decades.

Hence why research shows that companies spend on average 18 hours every month on modifying, consolidating, correcting and updating information in their self-created spreadsheets. Deloitte even found that 23% of all spreadsheets contain errors.

A spreadsheet-driven process will lead to errors, data leaks, inefficient processes – and that’s just the beginning. A majority of users even report regularly emailing spreadsheets containing highly sensitive information – to coworkers without reflecting on privacy issues (oh hey GDPR 👋).

corporify do not use excel

And why exactly is that an issue?

Users will commonly justify the use of Microsoft Excel by focusing on its natural intuitiveness. If you simply want to set up a table and add a few data points, then it is quite easy to use. However, if you want to get into more complex data categorization and management, you’ll need to bring in add-ons, macros, V-LOOKUPS and special shortcuts. Hardly user-friendly that way.

Nevertheless, the real danger of using Microsoft Excel for entity management doesn’t just lie in the core application, there’s also the matter of how people use it. The biggest problem is that anyone can create spreadsheets - badly. Because it’s so easy to use, the creation of even important spreadsheets is not restricted to people who do it in a methodical, well-documented way.

The most common pitfalls

While it should be clear by now that we’re very much in favor of managing legal entities digitally, here’s an overview of the most common pain points associated with using Microsoft Excel as a Legal Entity Management Platform.

  • Death by a thousand typos
  • Spreadsheets are data silos
  • Ground control to major Tom
  • It’s simply too limited
  • Security isn’t a product, but a process
  • Not a one-stop-shop

 

Managing multiple legal entities can be a true challenge. And while it’s tempting to look for a solution in a familiar piece of software, there is a better way.

Click here to download our whitepaper explaining all pain points in detail!

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