Customer insights to best practices
Last week I spoke with John, who leads a web automation team at a Fortune 500 professional staffing company that has been a customer of Kapow for more than 5 years, primarily using Kapow for Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Human Resource (HR) activities that involve transforming, synchronizing, and delivering information between their Vignette, SharePoint® and Salesforce® applications.
Like almost every enterprise organization their business team’s use Microsoft Excel extensively for data sharing and reporting, and collaboration via Microsoft SharePoint.
As John explains, “Microsoft Excel® is used throughout the organization to capture data within business teams, reporting, or simply for exchanging data, all within SharePoint.”
John elaborates, “Microsoft has really enhanced Excel, which is seen with the improvements in data visualization between Excel 2010 and 2013 versions. Microsoft is also integrating Excel with SharePoint 2013 so you can surface live Excel data directly in web parts in SharePoint. This is the path we are taking and with the new Excel edit feature in Kapow 9.4 we expect to quadruple the use of Kapow over the next year to support it.”
I must admit this is very exciting and great to see the same excitement from customers who see the value in automating activities that involve great amounts of data and the use of Excel.
When you use Kofax Kapow to dynamically update live internal and external data in an Excel spreadsheet, this information can in turn be surfaced in SharePoint, making your entire SharePoint platform a collaborative real-time decision-making platform. Data is unlocked from any data source you can think of, including cloud apps, enterprise apps, web portals, emails, active directory and of course SharePoint itself.
Today the company updates all their Excel data repositories and Excel reports manually, which is not only tedious and not very exciting work, but unavoidably will also include human errors, which could become critical to their business.
Some of the data they capture is coming from other departments. Just managing who has done what is a nightmare. That’s why capabilities like Kapow’s advanced logging are so important when it comes to having a full audit trail.
In one example, John explains how they currently receive a separate email when a person joins a training course, which is sent through a SharePoint workflow but then requires a business user to manually key this information into Excel. All this is automated with Kapow 9.4.
John expects that automating manual Excel driven work will be expanding their need for Kapow into more departments, including HR, payroll and employee development. Finally, by combining Excel and Kapow into SharePoint this will drive adoption within data delivery, data visualization, and data collaboration.
Do you have any insights regarding Excel? We would like to hear from you.
Stay tuned for my next customer interview about using Kapow for Excel automation.
Corporate Evangelist, Kapow & Information Integration