A common administrative need is to control VM farms. While there are a number of pointy-clicky GUI tools, VMware offers the VIX library to permit writing scripts to control VM's.
Here's some information we looked at recently on PyVIX2 and VMware.
Spreadsheets are the universal user interface. Everyone likes them, they're almost inescapable. And they work. There's no reason to attempt to replace the spreadsheet with a web page or a form or a desktop application. It's easier to cope with spreadsheet vagaries than to replace them.