The Advantages of Databases Compared to Spreadsheets
Data is vital for small and large companies. Business managers and analysts depend upon this data for methods and decisions for the firm. Spreadsheet and database possibly are the two most commonly used data storage devices.
The terms are commonly used interchangeably; others may not be able to distinguish between them, but they’re far from the same. Both are valuable; however, spreadsheets aren’t the best tool because they lack a database’s adaptability and performance.
What is a spreadsheet?
A spreadsheet is a computer application that became a standard feature of an office suite, and it’s like having a digital form of a paper-based bookkeeping worksheet. Many companies use spreadsheets instead of keeping paper-based accounts.
The spreadsheet contains cells, and each cell can store numeric or text information. VisiCalc was the first electronic spreadsheet, and Lotus 1-2-3 was a very popular spreadsheet before the Windows era. Today, MS Excel is the most commonly used electronic spreadsheet.
What is a database?
A database is a collection of related information stored electronically. Each database stores data in tables where a user can insert, update, retrieve and delete data using a Database Management System (DBMS). Additionally, a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS) is a DBMS based on the relational model. A programmer can use Structured Query Language (SQL) to do procedures or control information on the database.
What are the key advantages of a database over a spreadsheet?
- A spreadsheet enables text and numeric characters to be saved in its cells however can not handle other formats such as pictures and videos. On the other hand, a database can accommodate various files kept in tables and hold larger file sizes. You can likewise organize information into multiple views and isolate subsets of data at a time.
- You can type anything by default in a spreadsheet, which could create issues when you or a co-worker type erroneous information. In databases, you can set parameters or conditions to confirm data inputs that prompt the user regarding the invalid entry. The database offers integrity and order to the data stored in its tables.
- You can easily share spreadsheets through links or cloud sharing. But, sharing is not as good as collaborating, and spreadsheets fail when it comes to the latter. There are many highly recommended collaborative software for internal use today. You can easily find a database editor that allows you to build and maintain tools with minimal coding.
- Spreadsheets have limited searching and filtering functionality. A database can recover and organize data a lot quicker through specific parameters. Today, the easiest database program editor is within everyone’s reach, and even non-programmers can use these tools in their work.
How relevant is a database in today’s workplace?
Database systems run well with Virtual Private Network (VPN) and Virtual Private Cloud (VPC). Whether on a company server or cloud-based, you’ll be able to have a protected and dependable database system. A database editor with a Basedash self-hosting feature allows your system to run internal tools on your server, save the information in your database, and build your own web experience.
The Need for HIPAA Compliance
The regulation – Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) sets the standard for companies that deal with protected health information (PHI). Healthcare providers must transition to computerized operations; thus, a database system is vital in the healthcare sector.
There are two commonly used methods to save data digitally: a spreadsheet and a database. A spreadsheet works well for accounting tasks; it’s most likely created with accountants in mind. Yet, the database is used in large ventures that cover practically all sectors.
Nevertheless, the main distinction is that the spreadsheet is an application created to help arrange, manage, and calculate data. While a database can do all the spreadsheet features, it does more than gather related data and organize them for easy access and manipulation.