Published Now and Again for Business Users of Microsoft Excel.
Excel-Friendly Data + Excel MVPs
+ Answers to Your Excel Questions
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
If you like this newsletter, please forward it to
other Excel users.
Working with raw data is one of the most frequent causes of Spreadsheet Hell.
We can work for hours sorting and summarizing and massaging and consolidating
that data, working to sift ounces of insight from mountains of chaos.
if we do a really good job The Boss will want us to prepare an updated version
at the first opportunity.
From The Boss's point of view, however, there are at
least two significant concerns. One of these is efficiency. It takes a long time
to manufacture those reports. And The Boss knows that we have many
additional things to do.
The other concern is accuracy. The Boss knows how
inherently inaccurate spreadsheet reports can be when we manufacture them from
raw data. Not only is this process prone to many errors, there's often no
way to reconcile the results with an ultimate truth. We therefore have
no practical way to know whether our results are accurate.
What Do Users Need From
Excel-Friendly Data Sources? I begin by quoting several columnists who
apparently think that this is the only type of reporting that Excel can do. And
they don't like it one bit.
In fact, when Excel gets its data from an
Excel-friendly data source, most of these problems go away. We can update our
reports in seconds. And we typically can reconcile key values with easily
available check figures.
Better yet, we Excel users can provide our
with useful information that often is available in no other way.
"Charley, I'm hoping you can help..."
I often receive email from Excel users who are
trying to solve an Excel problem. Usually, the problem involves some business
application of Excel.
I've tried to keep my responses short because
I'm always short of time. But last week I realized that there would be several
benefits if I published interesting questions:
- I could afford to spend more time on
- Other Excel users may have similar
questions, and benefit from the answers. They also could correct me when I'm wrong.
- When I have no clue about an answer,
other Excel users could provide useful insight.
this page has four
questions about Excel that I've responded to recently. Some of these responses are
the length of a short article.
So, if you have any questions about using Excel in business, send them my
way. Now that I've started this section, I'll need to keep it growing.
Top Excel MVP Sites
From the time that ExcelUser was about a
month old, people with Excel-related sites have asked me to link to them.
I've always asked them to wait until I had a place to list those links.
Finally, I decided to begin with Excel
weekend I visited all of the English-language web sites I could find for
Excel MVPs. You'll
find the annotated MVP links here.
Although there are
about 60 Excel MVPs, I listed only 15 sites. Many of the other MVPs have no
web sites, tiny ones, or non-English ones.
If you can recommend any other good Excel web
sites run by current or former Excel MVPs, please send me their links.
Enough for now.