Microsoft Access is a database software application. It has a number of uses for both end consumers and developers. Access was first released in 1992. While the file formats for Access can be used by other Microsoft Office products like Excel and Word, their functionality can be limited.
Microsoft Access database files require that the user has a compatible version of Access to open them. While some Access files can be opened in other Microsoft Office applications (e.g., Excel, Word) the functionality is limited. The user can access the data tables but not the organizational features of Access that are necessary for creating reports.
Reports in Access do not have all the functionality of a program like Word. For example, Access can create a report on very specific areas of the database but the user is limited in the way the information is presented. Word or PowerPoint allows for more creativity in the actual presentation of information.
Databases with multiple variables and a wide variety of information can pose problems to those attempting to organise the information. For example, all the variables, while relevant, may not fit neatly into a report. The result may be a very large, hard-to-follow report that is not user-friendly.
Very large databases can take a long time to generate a report. Once the desired parameters have been specified, Access begins to compile a report. If the database is very large, compiling and organising that data can take quite some time.