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

Top Excel data cleansing techniques

15 December 2017

Data cleansing is an important activity within Excel and one that we find ourselves doing day in day out, sometimes without even knowing it.

My top data cleansing techniques are:

  • Unpivot data.
  • Find & Replace.
  • Find errors with Go to Special constants.
  • Find blank cells in Excel with a color.
  • Remove duplicates in an Excel table.
  • Text to Columns: Dates.
  • Using formulas to clean data.
  • Excel add-Ins.
Displaying decimals versus Rounding in Excel

Displaying decimals versus Rounding in Excel

9 December 2017

This article describes a situation where there was a significant difference between the calculated and expected values.

The problem was caused by the way that Excel rounds values for display purposes, but the formula is calculating using the actual cell content.

Using the ROUND function can help resolve this type of problem.

Visualizing parts to a whole in Excel charts

Visualizing parts to a whole in Excel charts

30 November 2017

When you think of visualizing parts to a whole in Excel charts the first thing that's likely to come to mind is the pie chart, or if you're Homer Simpson then you might think of doughnut charts!

Using football as inspiration, let's look at our options for visualizing parts to a whole data using a standard set of football statistics.

Chart types explored in this article include:

  • Pie chart.
  • Doughnut chart.
  • 100% Stacked Column/Bar chart.
  • Stacked area chart.
  • Line chart.
  • Treemap.
  • Sunburst.
  • Layered bar chart.
  • Marimekko.
Excel PivotTable error handling

Excel PivotTable error handling

18 November 2017

Obviously, we don't want our PivotTables littered with #DIV/0! and #NULL! errors if we're presenting them in a report. That would just create unnecessary questions and we're busy enough.

Thankfully Excel PivotTable error handling is easy to control via the PivotTable Options. This article shows you how.

As a bonus, this article also discusses what to display when the prior period was zero. Specifically, is the percentage change from nothing to something equal to 100%?

10 things you should never do in Excel

10 things you should never do in Excel

9 October 2017

Mastering Excel takes some experience and patience, but it's easy to make mistakes even if you've been using it for a long time. Sometimes, choices seem like a brilliant idea—until they're not, and the resulting problems are hard to troubleshoot.

In this article, I share 10 ways to avoid actions that seem good... at the time:

  • Rely on multiple links.
  • Destroy data.
  • Rely on default settings.
  • Ignore Table objects.
  • Use Excel as a database or Word processor.
  • Forget to protect your work.
  • Leave blanks.
  • Use numbers as column headings.
  • Allow error values.
  • Sluff off backups.
Excel IFERROR function with formula examples

Excel IFERROR function with formula examples

30 September 2017

The tutorial shows how to use IFERROR in Excel to catch errors and replace them with a blank cell, another value or a custom message.

You will learn how to use the IFERROR function with VLOOKUP and INDEX MATCH, and how it compares to IF ISERROR and IFNA.

4 alternatives to nested IF formulas

4 alternatives to nested IF formulas

24 September 2017

Nested IF formulas are extremely useful for complex decision making on a spreadsheet, but they can also be long, messy and convoluted.

This blog post explores 4 alternatives which are easier, faster and cleaner than the classic nested IF:

  • The IFS function.
  • Using VLOOKUP for an exact match.
  • Using VLOOKUP for a range lookup.
  • The fantastic CHOOSE function.
7 common VBA mistakes to avoid

7 common VBA mistakes to avoid

21 September 2017

When it comes to VBA, it's almost too easy to make a mistake. These mistakes can cost you greatly, both in time and in frustration.

In this post, I'd like to help you avoid these typical mistakes and make you a better VBA programmer:

  • Using .Select / .Activate.
  • Using the Variant type.
  • Not using Application.ScreenUpdating = False.
  • Referencing the worksheet name with a string.
  • Not fully qualifying your range references.
  • Making your Sub / Function TOO LONG.
  • Going down the nested For / If rabbit hole.
5 reasons to use an Excel Table as the source of a Pivot Table

5 reasons to use an Excel Table as the source of a Pivot Table

15 September 2017

Learn why using an Excel Table as the source of a Pivot Table can save time and prevent errors.

The reasons why you should use Tables for the source data range of your Pivot Tables are:

  • Adding new data & preventing embarrassment.
  • Eliminate maintenance on multiple Pivot Tables.
  • Prevent errors when creating Pivot Tables.
  • Avoid whole column references.
  • Prevent the Filter controls error with connected Slicers.
Go to top