You can use data in other worksheets or workbooks in your formulas. You make the in Visual Studio .NET

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You can use data in other worksheets or workbooks in your formulas. You make the
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link by clicking the cell, which creates a 3-D reference to that cell.
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When you create a link to a cell in a table s Totals row, hiding the Totals row causes
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If you always work on a group of workbooks at the same time, create a workspace
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at a Glance
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Define an alternative data set, page 190 Define multiple alternative data sets, page 194
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Vary your data to get a desired result by using Goal Seek, page 198
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Analyze data by using descriptive statistics, page 207
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Find optimal solutions by using Solver, page 201
Analyzing Alternative Data Sets
In this chapter, you will learn how to Define an alternative data set. Define multiple alternative data sets. Vary your data to get a desired result by using Goal Seek. Find optimal solutions by using Solver. Analyze data by using descriptive statistics.
When you store data in a Microsoft Excel 2010 workbook, you can use that data, either by itself or as part of a calculation, to discover important information about your organization. When you track total sales on a time basis, you can find your best and worst sales periods and correlate them with outside events. For businesses such as Consolidated Messenger, package volume increases dramatically during the holidays as customers ship gifts to friends and family members. The data in your orksheets is great for answering the question, What happened The data is less useful for answering what-if questions, such as, How much money would we save if we reduced our labor to 20 percent of our total costs You can always save an alternative version of a workbook and create formulas that calculate the effects of your changes, but you can do the same thing in your existing workbooks by defining one or more alternative data sets and switching between the original data and the new sets you create. Excel also provides the tools to determine the input values that would be required for a formula to produce a given result. For example, the chief operating officer of Consolidated Messenger, Lori Penor, could find out to what level the revenues from three-day shipping would need to rise for that category to account for 25 percent of total revenue. In this chapter, you ll learn how to define alternative data sets and determine the necessary inputs to make a calculation produce a particular result.
8
Analyzing Alternative Data Sets
Practice Files Before you can complete the exercises in this chapter, you need to copy the book s practice files to your computer. The practice files you ll use to complete the exercises in this chapter are in the 08 practice file folder. A complete list of practice files is provided in Using the Practice Files at the beginning of this book.
Defining an Alternative Data Set
When you save data in an Excel worksheet, you create a record that reflects the characteristics of an event or object. That data could represent the number of deliveries in an hour on a particular day, the price of a new delivery option, or the percentage of total revenue accounted for by a delivery option. After the data is in place, you can create formulas to generate totals, find averages, and sort the rows in a worksheet based on the contents of one or more columns. However, if you want to perform a what-if analysis or explore the impact that changes in your data would have on any of the calculations in your workbooks, you need to change your data. The problem with manipulating data that reflects an event or item is that when you change any data to affect a calculation you run the risk of destroying the original data if you accidentally save your changes. You can avoid ruining your original data by creating a duplicate workbook and making your changes to it, but you can also create alternative data sets, or scenarios, within an existing workbook. When you create a scenario, you give Excel alternative values for a list of cells in a worksheet. You can use the Scenario Manager to add, delete, and edit scenarios.
Defining an Alternative Data Set
Clicking the Add button displays the Add Scenario dialog box.
From within this dialog box, you can name the scenario and identify the cells for which you want to define alternative values. After you click OK, a new dialog box opens with spaces for you to type the new values.
Clicking OK returns you to the Scenario Manager dialog box. From there, clicking the Show button replaces the values in the original worksheet with the alternative values you just defined in the scenario. Any formulas referencing cells with changed values will recalculate their results. You can then remove the scenario by clicking the Undo button on the Quick Access Toolbar.
Important If you save and close a workbook while a scenario is in effect, those values become the default values for the cells changed by the scenario! You should seriously consider creating a scenario that contains the original values of the cells you change or creating a scenario summary worksheet (a topic covered in the next section).
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