We are an IT solution vendor based in the Tokyo area. Throughout our experience in development, we have seen examples where using Microsoft Excel and Access can improve work efficiency in areas that an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system cannot handle. We expect that use of Excel and Access use will expand because areas that ERP cannot handle are rapidly growing and system change is more demanding than ever due to the competitiveness in the market. However, these tools also have limitations because they are developed primarily for the personal use.
These limitations can be seen from two different positions. The first is from the company and administrative position. While managed by Excel and Access, the data there is sometimes very important for the company. This is an issue in terms of security. The other position is from the workplace. Excel is very effective at creating a user interface (UI) oriented towards local users. However, when used by many people, some problems emerge, such as the difficulty of aggregating Excel workbooks, the inability to share inter-organizational information in real time, and the demand of complicated operations to establish data linkage to ERP.
Thus, the idea comes up to systematize the Excel and Access work mentioned above. However, we have also seen many examples where an IT system, installed at a very expensive cost, cannot be used at workplaces effectively and the Excel and Access work is re-produced. Why is this so?
A Line-of-business (LOB) system developed by a company initiative is naturally intended to primarily solve the problems on the company side. But, from the workplace viewpoint, useful UI implemented by Excel is often changed significantly (because such UI cannot be implemented easily using anything other than Excel), and as a result of such changes, productivity in the workplace drops, and such an LOB system will not be actively used. The workforce will only use the system when absolutely required, and will cover the rest using Excel and Access.
With that in mind, we intended to provide a solution which can achieve a win-win relationship for both the company and workplace sides. Specifically, by using dbSheetClient, we built a web-enabled system to realize this goal. This brings the security function that the company demands, and can create UI using the Excel and Access functions. Further more, since data is managed in a database, it becomes possible to share inter-organizational information in real-time. As a result, the work place can achieve a tremendous improvement in performance.
We have produced such results so far, please feel free to browse through our website to see for yourself how it's all possible.