The untested spreadsheet is as dangerous and untrustworthy as an untested program.
Price (2006)
The issue is not whether there is an error but how many errors there are and how serious they are.
Panko (2007)
Spreadsheets are the most popular live programming environments, but they are also notoriously fault-prone.
Hermans & van der Storm (2015)
Spreadsheets are dangerous to their authors and others.
Durusau & Hunting (2015)
Spreadsheet development must embrace extensive testing in order to be taken seriously as a profession.
Bock (2016)
Spreadsheet errors have resulted in huge financial losses.
Abraham & Erwig (2007)
Untested spreadsheets are riddled with errors.
Miller (2005)
Despite being staggeringly error prone, spreadsheets are a highly flexible programming environment.
Abreu, et al (2015)
Developing an error-free spreadsheet has been a problem since the beginning of end-user computing.
Mireault (2015)
Most large spreadsheets have dozens or even hundreds of errors.
Panko & Ordway (2005)
94% of the 88 spreadsheets audited in 7 studies have contained errors.
Panko (2008)
Spreadsheets are notoriously error-prone.
Cunha, et al (2011)
Spreadsheets are extraordinarily and unacceptably prone to error.
Dunn (2010)
The quality and reliability of spreadsheets is known to be poor.
Bishop & McDaid (2007)
Spreadsheet errors... a great, often unrecognised, risk to corporate decision making & financial integrity.
Chadwick (2002)
Spreadsheets contain errors at an alarmingly high rate.
Abraham, et al (2005)
Spreadsheets are alarmingly error-prone to write.
Paine (2001)
Spreadsheets are easy to use and very hard to check.
Chen & Chan (2000)
Studies have shown that there is a high incidence of errors in spreadsheets.
Csernoch & Biro (2013)
The results given by spreadsheets are often just wrong.
Sajaniemi (1998)
Spreadsheet errors are pervasive, stubborn, ubiquitous and complex.
Irons (2003)
It is irrational to expect large error-free spreadsheets.
Panko (2013)
Overconfidence is one of the most substantial causes of spreadsheet errors.
Sakal, et al (2015)
It is now widely accepted that errors in spreadsheets are both common and potentially dangerous.
Nixon & O'Hara (2010)
1% of all formulas in operational spreadsheets are in error.
Powell, Baker, & Lawson (2009)
Most executives do not really check or verify the accuracy or validity of [their] spreadsheets...
Teo & Tan (1999)
Spreadsheets... pose a greater threat to your business than almost anything you can imagine.
Howard (2005)
Programmers exhibit unwarranted confidence in the correctness of their spreadsheets.
Krishna, et al (2001)
A lot of decisions are being made on the basis of some bad numbers.
Ross (1996)
The software that end users are creating... is riddled with errors.
Burnett & Myers (2014)
Errors in spreadsheets... result in incorrect decisions being made and significant losses incurred.
Beaman, et al (2005)
Spreadsheets are more fault-prone than other software.
Kulesz & Ostberg (2013)
Every study that has looked for errors has found them... in considerable abundance.
Panko & Halverson (1996)
Research on spreadsheet errors is substantial, compelling, and unanimous.
Panko (2015)
Spreadsheets are commonly used and commonly flawed.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2008)
Spreadsheet errors are still the rule rather than the exception.
Nixon & O'Hara (2010)
People tend to believe their spreadsheets are more accurate than they really are.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2006)
Spreadsheet shortcomings can significantly hamper an organization's business operation.
Reschenhofer & Matthes (2015)
Spreadsheets are often hard, if not impossible, to understand.
Mireault & Gresham (2015)
Despite overwhelming and unanimous evidence... companies have continued to ignore spreadsheet error risks.
Panko (2014)
Never assume a spreadsheet is right, even your own.
Raffensperger (2001)
Spreadsheets can be viewed as a highly flexible programming environment for end users.
Abreu, et al (2015)
Spreadsheets have a notoriously high number of faults.
Rust, et al (2006)
Every study, without exception, has found error rates much higher than organizations would wish to tolerate.
Panko (1999)
Errors in spreadsheets are as ubiquitous as spreadsheets themselves.
Colbenz (2005)
Your spreadsheets may be disasters in the making.
Caulkins, Morrison, & Weidemann (2006)
Even obvious, elementary errors in very simple, clearly documented spreadsheets are... difficult to find.
Galletta, et al (1993)
...few incidents of spreadsheet errors are made public and these are usually not revealed by choice.
Kruck & Sheetz (2001)
A significant proportion of spreadsheets have severe quality problems.
Ayalew (2007)
60% of large companies feel 'Spreadsheet Hell' describes their reliance on spreadsheets.
Murphy (2007)

Spreadsheet bibliography

Title Spreadsheet accuracy theory
Authors Susan E. Kruck & Steven D. Sheetz
Year 2001
Type Article
Publication Journal of Information Systems Education
Series Volume 12, Number 2, pages 93-106
Abstract

Electronic spreadsheets have made a major contribution to financial analysis and problem solving processes. Decisions made using these tools often involve substantive consequences for the organizations.

However, academic literature reveals that experienced professionals and students make many errors when developing spreadsheets. Practitioners recognize the importance of accuracy and have published many techniques they use for improving the accuracy of their spreadsheets.

Systematic evaluation of this literature provides a basis for understanding practitioners' perceptions of how and why errors occur in spreadsheets and is also valuable source from which to identify a theory of spreadsheet accuracy and capture the knowledge of experienced spreadsheet developers.

The analysis of this literature suggests three categories of issues spreadsheet developers must address to create more accurate spreadsheets including:

  • Planning and design.
  • Formula complexity.
  • Testing/debugging.

Spreadsheet accuracy theory explains and predicts how changes in development processes can be expected to impact spreadsheet accuracy.

Full version Available
Sample
Spreadsheet error reduction model
Spreadsheet error reduction model

The spreadsheet accuracy theory's constructs and propositions are presented graphically in this figure.

The design/planning and testing/debugging constructs have positive relationships with the spreadsheet accuracy construct, while the formula complexity construct has an inverse relationship with spreadsheet accuracy.

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