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

Use IFERROR with VLOOKUP to get rid of #N/A errors

26 June 2017

When using the VLOOKUP formula in Excel, sometimes you may end up with the ugly #N/A error. This happens when your formula can not find the lookup value.

In this tutorial, I will show you different ways to use IFERROR with VLOOKUP to handle these #N/A errors cropping up in your worksheet.

Using the combination of IFERROR with VLOOKUP allows you to show something meaningful in place of the #N/A error (or any other error for that matter).

7 alternatives to nested IF function

7 alternatives to nested IF function

17 June 2017

The IF function is one of the most used functions in Excel. In my opinion, it is the foundation of all programming and Excel's formulae mastery.

However, it is also one of the most misused functions, especially nested IF. Especially now with Excel 2007 and beyond, you can nest up to 64 IF functions to form complex, slow and hard-to-understand IF THEN ELSE statement.

You don't need to slow or complicate your worksheet anymore, this article describes 7 alternatives to using nested IF functions.

PivotTables just got personal

PivotTables just got personal

13 June 2017

A recent update to Excel allows you to set the default PivotTable layout.

Now, when you're building complex reports or performing one-off analyses, you can quickly get started with your favorite PivotTable layout. This feature is available for Excel 2016 on Windows as part of an Office 365 subscription.

The performance of OLAP PivotTables has also been improved.

5 + 1 reasons you should use Excel's Quick Analysis option

5 + 1 reasons you should use Excel's Quick Analysis option

10 June 2017

In Excel (2013 or above version), whenever you select some data from a range of cells you get a small icon on the bottom right hand corner - it is called QUICK ANALYSIS.

I want to inspire you to use this tool, and for this I have listed 5+1 amazing things which you can do with the quick analysis option and which will save you a lot of time!

Some of the tasks that you can accomplish with the Quick Analysis tool are:

  • Add running total.
  • Create a Pivot Table.
  • Recommended charts.
  • Percentage share.
  • Insert a sparkline.
  • Highlight greater than values.
Polish your PivotTables with these excellent tips

Polish your PivotTables with these excellent tips

26 May 2017

PivotTables in Excel are pretty awesome. In just a few clicks, you can build a detailed report that gives you quick and important insights into your data.

If you polish your PivotTables in the right way, your data and associated reports will be so much more valuable to your friends, colleagues or your manager.

In this post you'll get a wide range of tips to improve your PivotTables, including various shortcuts and hints that may have never heard about:

  • Refresh your data source (to ensure your report is correct).
  • Disable AutoFit Column Widths.
  • Sort your data to answer the real questions.
  • How should blank cells be presented?
  • Change Subtotal options.
  • Group dates together (by Week, Month, Quarter, Year…).
  • Show values as a percentage or rank.
  • Apply a Style to your PivotTable to align with your branding.
  • Support your PivotTable with a PivotChart.
  • Analyse relevant data in detail by double-clicking a cell.
  • Add Slicers to enable quick filtering.
Two quick ways to troubleshoot broken Excel formulas

Two quick ways to troubleshoot broken Excel formulas

8 May 2017

Excel has built-in tools that are very useful for troubleshooting formulas, even if the formulas are complex:

  • Trace Precedents.
  • Evaluate Formula.

The Evaluate Formula window and the tracer arrows are great tools that can be used to help you find the reason for an error.

How to use form controls in Excel

How to use form controls in Excel

4 May 2017

You can give your worksheets form-like functionality without ever having to use VBA. In order to achieve this, you will have to use form controls.

Using formulas in combination with form controls, one can further extend the form control functionality and form-like appearance of the worksheet at hand.

This article uses a few simple examples to illustrate how to use form controls in Excel.

Excel price lookup for date and product name

Excel price lookup for date and product name

28 April 2017

This article describes several alternative approaches to solving a lookup problem in Excel.

Specifically, the problem is: given an on-going list of invoices, create a lookup formula to find the product price based on the invoice date.

Also have a look at the article's comments, where readers propose additional solutions.

Ultimate guide to data cleaning in Excel

Ultimate guide to data cleaning in Excel

25 April 2017

Data cleaning is one of the necessary excel skills that you are expected to possess today.

A data set might be having certain inconsistencies, and to make it more presentable and to help proper understanding of the data it is necessary to make the data look better and error-free.

This article describes 11 techniques to help you 'clean' data in Excel:

  • Run a spell check.
  • Make the text case consistent.
  • Remove any extra spaces.
  • Clear all formatting, comments, hyperlinks.
  • Treat cells containing errors.
  • Use 'Find and Replace' feature to make data look better.
  • Replace or substitute text.
  • Replace blank cells with '0', 'No Value', 'Nothing', 'Not Available', etc.
  • Treat duplicates.
  • Merging contents of columns.
  • Splitting contents of a column.
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