A lot of time and effort goes into creating a presentation and at the end of it all, you would want it to be able to stand out, attract attention and also be as accurate as possible. The tools you use to create your presentation can determine a great deal how it will turn out and the impact it will make.
PowerPoint is still the most favored program for designing presentations. In comparison to other programs like Excel and Access, it is able to turn a boring business report into an eye-catching functional presentation. This is why you should use PowerPoint to present database reports.
There are incredible advantages of using PowerPoint (with Windward integrated) for business reporting. Key among them are the following:
- Its visual tools make the presentation more attractive and easier to follow
- Provides high-quality graphics
- You can work with your colleagues with ease
- It enables fluid organization of a presentation and makes printing easier
- You can add video presentations customized to the audience need
- Your presentation and reports can be accessed anywhere on any device
- You can add impact to your presentation using animations and transitions
It is evident that PowerPoint is a game changer in driving the point home in your presentations. It, however, needs to have a data source. PowerPoint presentations cannot be effective without databases, here is an explanation of why.
You could choose to use Excel as your data source since it is quite flexible, allowing you to do a number of things with it. However, it is not without its limitations. Let's take a look at some of its pros and cons.
- It has a formula tool which makes it efficient for dealing with figures that need live computation
- It is easy to enter data and view it
- The learning curve is fairly simple
Sharing copies is easy
- There is flexibility in the way you can use each unique cell
- You cannot use it to answer detailed questions about the data you are presenting
- Excels prediction of data representation is usually wrong and this compromises data integrity
- It does not adapt well to data increase, when data increases, excels performance diminishes affecting the appearance and the whole presentation
- You cannot use it effectively to combine multiple data sets
- It is not easy for many people to work on the same spreadsheet, this makes collaboration difficult
Databases are a recommended alternative to power your PowerPoint presentation. They are like huge libraries where you can store all your data. Databases are well organized with information stored in the right place. Here is why they are favored for PowerPoint.
- They have logical storage which prompts you to store data in the right column. Unlike Excel, PowerPoint would stop if you entered the wrong type of data in the table
- It is able to store any amount of data and will continue to scale appropriately according to the size of the information being entered
- Different reports can be used with a combination of all the data stored
- The data categorization is efficient and there is no problem of merged or irregular cells
- It is designed purely for managing data which is what makes it efficient though when it comes to the presentation you need to have another program like PowerPoint to make sense of the data.
Just as we have mentioned before, the database cannot function on its own for presentation, but at the same time, integrating database and PowerPoint is not as smooth as you may imagine. You need to have a program like Windward that can link the two.
Linking database and PowerPoint enables you to automate certain functions that would have taken a long time. For example, creating a number of similar PowerPoint reports using the same data that differs by data-sets. Linking the two can automate this function and you can avoid the tiresome manual creation of several reports. Windward can be used to integrate the two.
Connecting PowerPoint to an external database will produce real-time information about the data, using visually engaging graphics. This data is usually updated in real-time making the presentation as accurate as possible.
Tools like Excel and Access may have similar capabilities but the features that PowerPoint provides, make it a more preferred option. PowerPoint on its own however will not achieve the presentation you want, it will need to be integrated with Windward for smooth insertion of data.
Here are seven reasons PowerPoint should be your preferred presentation program for data reporting.
Data is mainly about numbers, but numbers without explanation is not meaningful. It is only when these numbers are compared and contrasted with expectation competitor achievements and goals, that meaning begins to emerge and we can figure out if set standards have been achieved.
Instead of presenting these numbers as boring lists with totals, PowerPoint gives the presenter the ability to present these numbers as a representation of expectations and achievements. the presentation will incorporate animations to illustrate what the figures mean. For example, if you had to show a trend in buyers decisions over a period of one year, wouldn't it be easier to show this with an animated graph that has moving arrows showing the direction of the trend, upwards or downwards? Sometimes, you can even get more creative with the animation just to make a lasting impression.
Using other tools usually involves copying and pasting data onto the presentation page, this, for the most part, is time-consuming. Time though is not the only concern, human error too can come into play as you copy the data and you will end up with a flawed presentation.
With PowerPoint, however, the database is linked directly to the PowerPoint and the data is updated automatically, this means you save time and energy and still end up with an accurate report. The reports can even be scheduled to update periodically for even more accurate data.
We say this again, numbers are boring. Statisticians may love their numbers, unfortunately, the people they will present these numbers to may not be so taken up by them. But it is important that the reports with their numbers are presented and understood, so grabbing attention is paramount. With PowerPoint presentations, you can include graphics that will help to add some life into the numbers and release the monotony.
If people have colorful graphics with different information represented with different colors, it is likely that they will remember it even after you are done. It is also much easier to understand the information represented in a pie chart that figures in an excel sheet lined up and totaled.
This means you can create an external presentation of the data for people who cannot access the database. If, for example, you would like every member of the audience to have a copy of the data on a separate screen so that they can follow through as you present, this can be done for every highlighted point. Or if they are products in a catalog, you can provide information for each product and then generate a single presentation with all the products.
Since data is constantly changing, it is important to be able to have the most recent data when making decisions. with PowerPoint linked to Windward, access to updated information on any database is made possible in real-time. This means that presentations are up to date with the most recent data.
This enables decision-makers to make the right decision basing on the current data report. You simply need to schedule the data update in such a way that at the time that the data is being presented, you will have the right figures, for example, if you are showing viewership of a particular program, this is information that can change and you may need to have the most recent figures, with your presentation linked to data servers, that should not be a problem.
With PowerPoint linked to the database, you can achieve superior personalization for mailing lists. say you have different clients interested in different information, there is no need to send all the clients the same information which also includes data they may not be interested in. Just like with Snapshot presentation, you are able to generate just the information different clients are interested in and that is what is sent to them along with their name and other information that concerns them personally.
With Windward at the helm, you will achieve customer loyalty since they will feel like you take the time to attend to them individually not as a group and you meet their particular interests.
PowerPoint is a Microsoft program and Microsoft is used by the majority of computer users. This means when you create a PowerPoint presentation, you can share it with more people and collaborate on the same presentation together without having to look for a conversion tool. According to statistics, there are over 1 billion people who use Microsoft tools, this means that about 1 in 7 people on this earth are able to access a presentation in powerpoint compared to other programs. So, if you are sending out emails to clients, there is a higher chance they will be able to easily access your presentation if it is presented as PowerPoint.
When you use Windward, you can create meaningful reports using data on a database. Executives can look beyond numbers in a list and see the big picture that these numbers are painting for a better financial compass of the business.
The presentation is key to understanding data, it is no use to collect data and then present it as raw information. PowerPoint acts as the chef, to put together different ingredients (figures) and come up with an alluring presentation ready for the audience to consume.
When using PowerPoint to present data, the best-automated solution to link the PowerPoint to the database is Windward. The results of this integration are impressive and they will turn a
boring annual report on facts and figures into a more interactive lively discussion and more people will actually understand what is being presented.
-- Author: G Abel.