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Clear Insights “Break-Up” with Excel?

We know, you are still making it work but at what cost?

Okay, so we admit that we’re biased here because we’re the group offering the robust portfolio management solution that you are going to leave Excel, but the warning is well heeded, and frankly, our top five reasons only scratch the surface of why managing your fund on Excel is a not a stellar idea.

#1 Error Prone

With only rudimentary error validation systems on spreadsheets, all too easily mistakes slip by unnoticed. Moreover, errors can be deadly, especially for investment management firms, and their required attention to detail.

A simple mistake in an Excel column can be costly. There’s just no reason to put your business at risk like that.

#2 Time Intensive

The reality is that Excel is not a real-time working environment. It lacks structure and doesn’t have the level of automation or capabilities of the industry-specific software, especially

when it comes to portfolio management solutions and platforms. Excel formulas skew towards the arcane and esoteric, primarily when being used to compensate for software that’s not specialized for our industry.

Setting up the right formulas is a time-and-labor-intensive practice, and it’s also hard to explain to the back-office staff how to use the document correctly. Also, as we already mentioned, all it takes is one mistake to cost your business dearly.

Sometimes, you need to bring in more advanced pivot tables than Excel is designed to manage. The reality is that Excel is not intended to scale with your AUM.

It will become more and more tedious and ineffective to use spreadsheets as your firm’s portfolio grows.

With Excel and other spreadsheet software, the more data you enter, the harder it becomes to find what you need when you need it. As your AUM portfolio grows, your spreadsheet will become even more unwieldy and difficult to use. This leads to wasted time and lost opportunities.

#3 It Just Won’t Keep Up With Growing Demands

Imagine hiring a new employee and trying to bring that person up to speed on the large, homegrown spreadsheet solution your firms have been using. The reality is that you will be looking at a long and complicated on-boarding process. As you grow your system, you end up developing a mess that someone must learn.

When scaling up your firm, the last things you need are systems and workflows that are complex and unwieldy. If you continue to rely on Excel or other generic spreadsheet software to get you there, your firm will be setting itself up for nothing short of a disaster.

#4 Excel Was Never Designed To Be A  System Of Record

One of the downsides of standard spreadsheets is that they can’t be audited, and you can’t find out who made changes to the data. Yes, you might argue that with the advent of Google Docs, spreadsheets are now more trackable; however, this is not what they were designed for. This compounds the other problems inherent in working in generic spreadsheets, as it becomes next to impossible to track down the sources of errors and mistakes.

#5 The Headaches With Copying The File Around / Multiple People Working On The Document

The reality is that one person does not run your firm, and Excel adds to your headache by making it difficult for multiple users to access it. When passing around an Excel file, there’s always the built-in danger that you’re working on an old record and that someone else has the most up-to-date version. Add to that this question: What do you do when that person is out of the office or unavailable?

Google Docs and its shared ecosystem may make things a little easier for multiple users, but it doesn’t offer a real solution like one you’d find on platforms designed for portfolio management. It also has security complications that come from using cloud-based software that isn’t intended to protect sensitive financial information.

Are you ready to explore your options?

ClearStructure Financial Technology provides a fully integrated customizable solution designed to meet the unique needs of investment managers.

Sentry is the market solution of choice, powering greater investment workflow efficiency. Managers can streamline their front-, middle-, and back-office functionalities and hasten speed to market. Better still, with our web-based platform, you benefit from faster up-times, a streamlined, easy-to-navigate user experience, greater accessibility, and lower cost. The Sentry solution and modules are fully integrated and built on a single platform for a powerful and seamless experience.

We back our solutions with service and view all clients as partners. We leverage our decades of experience in the investment space to anticipate market changes and innovate accordingly—all to serve you better.


Download the complete Clear Insight Paper