My posts in the category "Dataloads", may seem a bit more technical, than what you expect in this blog. You may think: "What on earth do I need this for ? I just paste my data in the spreadsheet, and work on them from there! That's the hard part, so let's get going!"
However, I do consider setting up dataloads and dataconnections to be an important subject, due to the "ground rule", which we all try to work towards: "WORK SMARTER, NOT HARDER!".
Through my career, most Controllers, Business Analysts, Team Leaders, Process Managers, etc. I have seen using spreadsheets, make the same approach for data preparation: They cut the data from a datasource, paste it into a spreadsheet and then they begin to set the data up for analysis. The next time they need to update the data, they paste a new data set on top of the old one....and start the same datapreparation all over again. Lots of energy and time wasted.
Why make the same work over and over again !?!
This approach can be improved significantly, by direct access to the relevant database. This "Direct-access" to the datasource have the advantage, you only need to make the datapreparation once. After that, you simply refresh the datamodel everytime new data are available and Voilá! It takes a splitsecond.
It is true, that setting up a dataconnection to a database can be a tedious task for people who are not used to work with IT. Today, however, these tasks are, in many cases, much easier than you expect.
Therefore I will from time to time depart slightly from the primary scope of this blog, "advise business people in the use of business intelligence", and give some "tips´n tricks" and "walk-throughs" on how to set up dataconnections in Excel, in order to help you to "work smarter, not harder!"