Drilldown in Accounting Software Reports and Spreadsheets

Drilldown is a convenient tool built into most modern accounting and business software programs.

Most of the time you run summary financial reports to evaluate business performance. When reviewing this information oftentimes certain numbers standout as unusual. Other times you just want to see what made up the summary number.

That is where drilldown becomes a very useful tool. Clicking on the row in question will open up either a more detailed report or the actual transaction, keying on the specific data for analyzing the summary number in question. Without this drilldown capability, you would have to open another report and set your parameters to get the detailed information you were looking to analyze.

Another effective use of drilldown is for editing erroneous transactions. For example, in reviewing a daily sales report, you find an entry error. Instead of having to go to an edit utility, find the transaction and edit it, drilldown gives you the capability to click on the report row and edit the transaction.

I do have one word of caution regarding programs that have drilldown capabilities. Report users may need to see certain summary information, but you don’t want them to see sensitive detail data or edit transactions. That is where you want to a select a program that offers security to prevent them from drilling down to information you don’t want them to see.

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