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

Microsoft Excel: Rules for designing Excel workbooks

3 September 2017

Q. Is there a list of standard Excel design rules we should be following as we create new Excel worksheets?

A. By following a common set of spreadsheet design rules, companies can produce more consistent workbooks that may be easier to review, edit, and use by others in their organizations:

  • Documentation.
  • Table of contents.
  • Print macro buttons.
  • Avoid embedded assumptions.
  • Well-organized worksheet assumptions.
  • Assumptions in yellow cells.
  • Name assumption cells.
  • Error-checking formulas.
  • Organize your template by worksheets.
  • Simplify complex calculations.
  • Explanations.
  • Consistent look and feel.
  • Add File Properties.
  • Cross-footing and error-checking formulas.
  • Worksheet protection.
Scared straight? Reviewing Excel files in the wake of Wells Fargo

Scared straight? Reviewing Excel files in the wake of Wells Fargo

25 August 2017

The Wells Fargo inadvertent disclosure episode provides a high-profile reminder that attorneys who are responsible for reviewing and producing client documents must thoroughly understand those documents.

As reported by the New York Times, the inadvertently produced material "included copious spreadsheets with customers' names and Social Security numbers, paired with financial details like the size of their investment portfolios and the fees the bank charged them."

Here is a list of skills that I think every reviewer must have to competently review spreadsheets in the eDiscovery context:

  • Reviewing the entire workbook, not just the current tab.
  • Understanding Filters.
  • Identifying hidden rows, columns, and worksheets.
  • Identifying & deciphering formulas.
  • Understand the Freeze Panes display feature.
  • Finding and expanding truncated text.
  • Identify the boundaries of a worksheet.
  • Finding each worksheet's print formatting.
Understanding absolute, relative, and mixed cell references in Excel

Understanding absolute, relative, and mixed cell references in Excel

10 August 2017

A worksheet in Excel is made up of cells. These cells can be referenced by specifying the row value and the column value.

The power of Excel lies in the fact that you can use these cell reference in other cells when creating formulas.

There are three kinds of cell references in Excel:

  • Relative cell references.
  • Absolute cell references.
  • Mixed cell references.
  • Understanding these different type of cell references will help you work with formulas and save time (especially when copy pasting formulas).

Text import wizard gone? How to import CSV and text files in Excel

Text import wizard gone? How to import CSV and text files in Excel

31 July 2017

Microsoft quietly replaced the comfortable Text Import Wizard from Excel and replaced it with the "Get & Transform" tools.

The "Get & Transform" tools offer a lot of options and are very powerful. Unfortunately, they are quite complicated to use. Here is what you should now.

Topics in this article include:

  • Restore the "Text Import Wizard".
  • How to use the "Text Import Wizard".
  • Import text and csv files with the "Get & Transform" tools.
Excel named range - How to define and use names in Excel

Excel named range - How to define and use names in Excel

17 July 2017

This tutorial explains what an Excel name is and shows how to define a name for a cell, range, constant or formula. You will also learn how to edit, filter and delete defined names in Excel.

Topics include:

  • Excel name - the basics.
  • How to name a range in Excel.
  • How to create a named constant.
  • How to make a named formula.
  • How to name columns and rows (create names from selection).
  • How to create a dynamic named range in Excel.
  • Excel name rules.
  • Scope of Excel names.
  • Excel Name Manager.
  • Top 5 benefits of using names in Excel.
  • Excel named range - tips and tricks.
Excel and modeling governance: What can we do better?

Excel and modeling governance: What can we do better?

11 July 2017

Looking around, a few things are apparent:

  • Everyone is still using Excel.
  • Spreadsheets still contain errors.
  • Graduates still don't have the requisite spreadsheet skills upon entering the workforce.
  • Companies still aren't regularly enforcing good model governance.

This article (see page 7) looks at how we can address the issues and make spreadsheets more user-friendly and faster to use, less prone to error and more capable of completing the tasks required of them.

Excel chart secondary axis alternatives

Excel chart secondary axis alternatives

7 July 2017

Sometimes a secondary axis is a necessary evil. After all, most of the time you can't plot big numbers and little numbers in the same chart without the little numbers getting lost in the scale.

With a few simple changes, we're able to present our readers with a chart that's quick and easy to read. Let's be honest, anything less would be a waste of their time and yours.

7 ways to use Excel REPT function

7 ways to use Excel REPT function

1 July 2017

When is the last time you used the REPT function in Excel? REPT is one of Excel's little-known, overlooked and underutilized functions, yet it is very useful.

Here are 7 ways you can start using the REPT function:

  • Add leading zeros.
  • Create inline charts.
  • Replace nested IF.
  • Create a mirror chart.
  • Create stem and leaf plots.
  • Extract N words from a text string.
  • Create a star rating system.
Do you have to use Dim to declare variables?

Do you have to use Dim to declare variables?

28 June 2017

When looking at other people's VBA code in books or on the internet we often see the Dim statement being used to declare variables.

It is possible to write valid VBA code without declaring variables, so why bother?

This blog discusses the advantages and disadvantages of declaring variables in VBA.

Go to top