20 Jul Maximizing Your Excel Data
Remember those college days when you were forced to take financial classes such as Accounting and Business courses in order to graduate? You were teaching yourself how to use Excel and trying to figure out formulas to make your presentations stand out above all? Staying up throughout the night due to procrastination just to get that piece of paper 4 years later?
Not much has changed since those golden years graduating from college and joining the work force. To be cost efficient, a lot of companies are still keeping Microsoft Excel around for reporting and financial purposes. Excel is something that a majority of people are all too familiar with whether it was for education, personal use or for work, so why not? There is not much training to implement the use of Excel and it gets the job done well.
Using Excel as your main reporting and analysis tool can be a time consuming process. Your company would require a lot of man-hours. Prioritization of importance is a must in order for you to analyze the data to get the correct information in the right amount of time. Working for a large company, you can imagine how long this process would take dealing with multiple (even hundreds) of workbooks at a time.
Working with multiple Excel files, you must be able to sift through the spreadsheets to utilize only the data that is needed. This can help eliminate a lot of human errors by not seeing data that you do not need at the moment. As you can see, even the most organized person can still make mistakes with so many workbooks to review.
Throughout your educational years (probably even preschool for most), you have been taught to work with others and build teamwork. This too has not changed now that you have joined the work force. Co-workers are constantly sharing Excel files, implementing new ideas and brainstorming on projects. With your Excel files being shared via emails, clouds or on just a good ole USB, it can be difficult to know which is the current, existing file and where it is located. Within Excel, you are able to lock your spreadsheets/workbook. You can lock cells with formulas to prevent any deleting that can cause errors within your data. But that is a lot of steps, locking cells and remembering passwords if you are handling multiple projects at a time.
Now that we mentioned sharing your Excel file, with many hands in the cookie jar, how is the integrity and accuracy kept? You must be able to view, review and view your spreadsheets before providing what you can call accurate data. Naming your most current file, checking for veracity in your formulas, columns and row before sending it off. You must also not assume that the person getting the file knows how to read and use the file properly. Keep your data clear, clean, simple and provide what is only needed.
As your organization continues to grow, implementing a business solution to coincide with your Excel files just makes sense in order to give your data analysis within minutes. Delivering faster and more accurate information that looks very modern with visualizations will pack a powerful punch during your presentations to executives. You can rest easy at night without dreaming of numbers and spreadsheets.