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SetuplyDec 8, 2022 10:35:00 AM4 min read

What Else is Wrong with Spreadsheet-Driven Client Onboarding

Onboarding teams often get stuck in a never-ending hamster wheel of data entry, dealing with dozens of documents, exhausting task lists, and repetitive communication that drags on for weeks, if not months.

Over 90% of customers feel that the companies they buy from 'could do better’ when onboarding new users. Spreadsheets in their many forms or a combination of various tools can't accommodate the complexity of modern B2B software implementations.

It's not all bad for spreadsheets - they can have their benefits. They're easy to use and can be adapted to tackle a broad range of needs. And, most importantly, they're familiar to everyone.

However, using spreadsheets can often lead to more unintended consequences when it comes to scalable client onboarding than it solves. As we covered in Onboarding Using Spreadsheets Doesn't Scale, there are plenty of reasons to navigate toward better alternatives. Today, we’ll share a few additional arguments in favor of the digitization and automation of client onboarding from several other perspectives.


Manual data entry disrupts project focus

For one, spreadsheets are time-consuming. Manually entering data and keeping track of changes or updates is a full-time job, and working with multiple teams or clients can become a disaster.

An onboarding process requires real-time data, engagement, and activity monitoring. Adding manual data entry, modification, and re-entry removes a team's ability to focus on the customer's project.


Lack of communication and client collaboration

When utilizing documents for onboarding, communication has always been an issue with manual processes. The spreadsheet-driven approach needs more visibility and interaction between internal team members and clients. It drives poor organizational alignment between the vendor and the client, resulting in low client engagement.

In a traditional spreadsheet-driven process, it can be challenging to know who is working on each task in real-time, the status of each action item, and when things are due. The lack of transparency into internal activity often leads to confusion and frustration among the onboarding team and clients, making the spreadsheet-driven onboarding process difficult to seamlessly introduce new onboarding reps if someone goes on vacation or is otherwise unavailable.


Inability to personalize the onboarding process in a scalable way

While spreadsheets have the flexibility to create templates and a certain degree of automation, they lack the customization capabilities for interaction styles that a purpose-built onboarding software can provide.

As covered previously, different sizes and types of businesses will require different onboarding requirements, integrations, and stakeholders. But there are other areas that need to be considered.

Some customers will prefer a high-touch synchronous approach. Others may want a more hands-on involvement with the ability to review the latest status and action items provided by the software vendor at a convenient time.

The client's preferred working dynamics should be taken into account from the beginning to ensure a smooth and successful transition to using the software, and it is challenging to do this in a spreadsheet.

The last thing a business wants to do is create an unhappy customer before they even get to use the software they just paid for!


No access to real-time analytics for onboarding optimization

A key benefit of the spreadsheet-driven client onboarding process is the ease of data entry. However, this, too, becomes its major drawback. Data will be present, but one would need a data expert on staff to glean actionable insights from it.

Without a dedicated data management and analytics system, teams can struggle to track progress, identify bottlenecks and other issues, and make timely and informed decisions about the project.

The lack of visibility will make verifying the accuracy and quality of an existing onboarding process more accessible. Without the ability to test, learn, and iterate to meet the client's needs and improve efficiencies, a business can suffer unnecessary costs, wasted time and effort, and a higher churn rate.


What's the alternative to spreadsheet-driven client onboarding?

A centralized, automated client onboarding solution designed for B2B software implementations that can enable onboarding teams and their clients and remove the mundane and time-consuming onboarding tasks will improve client satisfaction and increase efficiency.

A client onboarding solution should:

  • Allow to map out the entire client onboarding process from start to finish
  • Enable to visually see and track the progress of each client project in real-time
  • Provide a centralized repository for all client project data, files, and communication
  • Give the ability to customize the onboarding process for each client's individual needs
  • Allow to generate client reports and project status updates automatically
  • Help continuously improve a client onboarding process through data and analytics

A client onboarding solution will help save time, improve client satisfaction, reduce onboarding costs, and increase onboarding efficiency. It's the best way to avoid the Excel spreadsheet client onboarding nightmare.

At Setuply, we offer the only automated client onboarding solution that is purpose-built for B2B software vendors to quickly and efficiently onboard their clients. Our client onboarding software will help increase client satisfaction and reduce churn.

Schedule a demo today to see how Setuply can remove stress and reduce the cost of a client onboarding process: