Deal flow has often been modeled in Excel with deals/companies in rows and various attributes as columns. One of the fundamental shortcomings in Excel is the rapidly increasing complexity that follows when trying to model even slightly complicated data structures. Zapflow, on the other hand, is designed to eliminate that complexity. Sometimes it takes a shift in one's mindset to migrate from a spreadsheet to a dedicated tool with optimized structures and workflow already in place.
The stage captures the deals' progress in your pipeline
One of the key parameters for a deal is the stage, which typically is a step in a predetermined process (e.g. "long list" or "due diligence"). In Excel, there are typically some columns reserved for this OR one column captures this information as a value. Both options cause major limitations when dealing with the data.
In Zapflow, the configurable stages indicate how far along a given deal has progressed. In the image below, you can find a typical pipeline with 5 stages and the number of active deals per each stage.
The status tells you more about the deal life cycle
The status tells you whether a deal is active or not. Active deals are the ones which you are still considering or haven't reviewed yet. When it's time to say "no" or "not now" to a deal, you either pass the deal or put it on hold (for future re-evaluation). Please note that the status can be changed in any of the stages. Changing the status does not change the stage of the deal (and vice versa).
For example, if a deal is in the stage "Due Diligence" and you decide to pass it, you don't move it to a stage called "passed", but instead keep the stage as it is and change the status to "passed". When you do this with hundreds of deals, you'll have all the data on how many deals you passed, at which stages, why, by whom and how quickly.
After evaluating hundreds of real-life deal flow processes, we've incorporated industry best practices into Zapflow. Capturing these core attributes pays off handsomely when you are evaluating your own deal flow. This information is gathered automatically when using Zapflow without any extra effort on your part.