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posted by martyb on Saturday May 03 2014, @05:14PM   Printer-friendly
from the most-employees-are-not-in-Office-most-of-the-day dept.

A recent article in PCWorld reveals that many companies are simply throwing money away:

Organisations are wasting money licensing Microsoft Office applications that the majority of employees barely use, a study released this week by application analytics startup SoftWatch has found. Conclusion: many users could easly be migrated to far cheaper cloud applications such as Google Apps.

The firm carried out a 3-month analysis of Office suite use in 51 global firms representing 148,500 employees, revealing that seven out of ten employees weren't using any single application heavily, launching them only for viewing or light editing.

The average employee spent only 48 minutes per day using Office, largely the Outlook email client, which consumed about 68 percent of that activity. Excel was in second place with 17 percent, or an average of 8 minutes per day, leaving Word and PowerPoint trailing with only 5 minutes and 2 minutes per day each.

That email is popular and spreadsheets and presentations less so is not a surprise. The latter are occasional applications that non-specialist employees use only when they really have to and their importance can't necessarily be measured in terms of how often they are used so much as the impact that use has.

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  • (Score: 1) by isaac on Sunday May 04 2014, @09:54AM

    by isaac (500) on Sunday May 04 2014, @09:54AM (#39421)

    ...but if you need them, you really need them.

    Anyone touting LibreOffice as a viable Word or Excel replacement has never actually needed the functionality of Word or (especially) Excel.

    Even Excel for Mac is not a viable replacement for the real (i.e. Windows) Excel for many purposes and it's ostensibly "Microsoft Excel." (Try sharing a workbook with complex pivot tables, for example.)


  • (Score: 3) by moondrake on Sunday May 04 2014, @01:30PM

    by moondrake (2658) on Sunday May 04 2014, @01:30PM (#39453)

    May be true, but it can be inverted as well. I have several rather complex spreadsheets in gnumeric that do things that Excel cannot do because it does not have some of the extended functions that gnumeric offers. So people came to me to see how I calculated the thing and now run their own version of gnumeric specifically for this use case because it is far easier than trying to hack it together with some macros. Not that Excel was not "viable", it was just easier to do it in gnumeric.

    Similarly, for me, Word is not a viable replacement for some of the things I do in Libreoffice (better X-platform and version compatibility, better SVG support, better legacy format support, and _much_ stabler for large documents in my hands).

    So, if you get used to Libreoffice, you can do 95% what Excel does, and for the remaining 5% you need to spend some more work. But the opposite applies at well. If you happen to use something that is easier in Excel and you do not want to spend time to learn how to do it different, well, than by all means keep using it. But do not be so blind and look whether your work-flow cannot be improved by using something else when office falls short.