In general, people already know that Access is a software in Microsoft Office that is specifically provided for managing databases, such as Word for processing words, Excel for processing numbers, and so on.
But maybe only a few people know how powerful Access is to use in data processing. Access can store and manage data in a database, and can be used to create application programs, especially those related to data and databases. With Access we can create forms to input data, create queries to process data, and create reports to present data in printout form. All can be assembled in an application program that is run by the user without the need to know where the data will be stored and how the data will be processed. Users only need to do their respective tasks, and the application program will manage data storage and present information.
In short, Access is used to store data in a database, and to create application programs to manage data and present information.
Why use Access for databases? Because Access is so lightweight, it can be installed on almost any Windows-based computer –along with the frequently used Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. If your database is not very large, why should you install a large and expensive database server?
What is the size of the database that is said to be “small”? If your database is only for storing customer data, Purchase Order data, Quotation data, and Invoices, then you can use an Access database. An Access database file can hold your data for years, maybe even forever.
Why not just save the data in an Excel file? Of course you can, even Excel is equipped with the ability to manage databases. But data storage in Access is clearly more efficient because it follows database rules. We can also create application programs to manage the data more easily than if done with Excel, because originally Access was provided as a tool to manage data.
Is it difficult to store and manage data with Access? The answer is probably yes, if you compare it to Excel which is instant, and you can directly store any data in its cells. But it’s not difficult either, because Access is very easy to use. Storing data in a database does need to know the rules or ways of storing databases. This may be a barrier why people do not use Access. But with a little learning of database concepts, you can already use Access as a powerful tool.
Is it possible to use Access to store large amounts of company data? The answer: of course you can! Access can manage data from other enterprise-scale database systems. Here we use Access as a tool to manage data, a tool that is easy to use, and actually does not have to create an application program because Access is already acting as an application program.
The advantages of Access, which can be used to create application programs, are additional benefits. Access is a tool for creating database application programs that are very easy and fast, very different from other tools that require you to have high-level programming skills.
We can create professional application programs with Access. Almost all database application programs can be created with Access, in an easy and fast way. Why not take advantage of Access and instead go the hard way?
I am a database programmer. I can create all the application programs needed with Access, in an easy and fast way. Access is equipped with Microsoft’s typical VBA (Visual Basic for Application) programming language that is easy to use but still powerful for all needs.
If you still have doubts about Access, you can read my answer to people’s objections to Access (click here).
Now, the last thing I want to say, you can store data and application programs in an Access file! In this way, you can easily carry the data and application programs everywhere, or share them with others for updating, and so on.
Are you still confused about the application programs and databases that must be installed? Try using Access, you can open the file and immediately run the application and save the data! That instant!