Spreadsheets and other banks of information could need some tweaking to make them understandable.

Companies gather facts and figures on a daily basis and action tends to be taken on the strength of statistics. Those looking over the latest graphs and images that shed light into the firm's failures and successes are sure to realise the impact of the data. Presentations featuring this kind of information may lead to more job opportunities, as businesses decide to expand or could result in cuts in stock to reduce spending.

The task of putting together reports of this nature is important and if you have been given the responsibility of creating them, you may appreciate the functions integrated into Microsoft Access. As someone gathering the data, it may already speak volumes to you, but this is unlikely to translate at this stage to others who have not been involved in the same task. Database programmes, such as Access, are tools commonly used to move information around and present it in different ways.

Spreadsheets are ideal for simply displaying data, but to reveal more it is worth investing in database applications. Creators of these programmes are aware of the value of point and drag technology. As the title suggests, software of this nature is designed to be used by people who would not describe themselves as computer experts, although the more experienced usually find the products also meet their needs.

Constantly improved editions see users being able to create documents from templates provided, imported from elsewhere, or created there and then. Commonly used functions that enable you to put together tables are easy to find and just a few clicks away upon opening programmes. Before getting started with comparing data and transforming it into eye-catching reports, it is necessary to get all the information collected.

Access can import compatible information from a variety of sources, meaning you are able to draw together the facts and figures at your disposal and present them to those concerned. For example, you may be gathering the results of a customer service questionnaire following improvements to your services in a variety of locations. Different sites may have emailed you their results to be included in the database, allowing you to monitor the responses and impact of the changes.

This information can be pulled in and placed in new reports if appropriate. In this example, it is likely that you will add the data to an existing database to keep the information in one location. The results of the survey may be held in other documents, such as Excel spreadsheets. As workbooks from this application often go on to form the backbone of databases, Microsoft has ensured that you can swap data between the two programmes to facilitate this.

Once the data is in place, you are free to experiment with the tools on offer and create reports to highlight specific areas. These kinds of documents are one of the major reasons that workers turn to Access. In the previous example, the software would allow you to compare and highlight the retail outlets recording the highest amount of customer satisfaction following changes to the firm.

This could be contrasted with the lowest scoring shop and other factors that may have lead to this outcome, such as under-staffing, for instance. Database programmes are evolving and generally give you instant access to the functions that assist the creation of documents. Reports can be customized so they are unique to your firm and the project at hand.