What functions does project management software provide that you
cannot do easily using other tools such as a spreadsheet or database?

The answer is more about integration. We sell project management software called Project Administrator. By using a database you can combine issues, risks, actions, variations, budget and expenditure, documents, roles and responsibilities and even the schedule. You avoid actions attached to Word document minutes, in Excel spreadsheets and even post it notes. They are all in one database related to one project.

You can also cut and dice the information to find, for example, what action items are overdue, or what risks are still outstanding, or what diary notes relate to a certain project.

You could run a company accounts from Excel spreadsheets but you would soon have an unwieldy mass of information that may be inconsistent, and not easily give you the answers you need. Good project management software will do all the hard work for you.