All articles in 'Analytics' Category

15 Quick & powerful ways to analyze business data

Published on Jul 1, 2015 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs, Learn Excel
15 Quick & powerful ways to analyze business data

Here is a situation all too familiar.

You are looking at a spreadsheet full of data. You need to analyze and tell a story about it. You have little time. You don’t know where to start.

Today let me share 15 quick, simple & very powerful ways to analyze business data. Ready? Let’s get started.

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CP030: Detecting fraud in data using Excel – 5 techniques for you

Published on Feb 19, 2015 in Analytics, Chandoo.org Podcast Sessions

In the 30th session of Chandoo.org podcast, let’s learn how to uncover fraud in data.

How to detect fraud in data - 5 techniques for you - CP030 -  Chandoo.org podcast

What is in this session?

In the wake of hedge fund scams, accounting frauds and globalization, We, analysts are constantly second guessing every source of data. So how do you answer a simple question like, “am I being lied to?” while looking at a set of numbers your supplier has sent you.

That is our topic for this podcast session.

In this podcast, you will learn

  • Quick announcements about 50 ways & 200k BRM
  • Introduction to fraud detection
  • 5 techniques for detecting fraud
    • Benford’s law
    • Auto correlation
    • Discontinuity at zero
    • Analysis of distribution
    • Learning systems & decision trees
  • Implementing these techniques in Excel
  • A word of caution
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Who is the most consistent seller? [BYOD]

Published on Feb 18, 2015 in Analytics, Excel Howtos, Pivot Tables & Charts
Who is the most consistent seller? [BYOD]

Who is the most consistent of all?

Imagine you are a category manager at a large e-commerce company. Your site offers various products, but you don’t really make these products. You list products made by other vendors on your site. Every day, these vendors would send you invoices for the amount of product they have sold. Above is a snapshot of such invoices.

Looking at this list, you have a few questions.

  1. Who is the best seller?
  2. Who is the most active seller?
  3. Who is the most consistent seller?
  4. Which seller has fewest invoices?

Let’s go ahead and answer these using Excel. Shall we?

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Revenue vs. Commission growth – Getting the message across [BYOD]

Published on Feb 17, 2015 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs

Situation: Our commissions are growing way faster than revenues
Let’s say you are looking revenues & sales commissions of your company for last few years. The data looks like this:

revenue-growth-vs-commission-growth-data

And you want to highlight the fact that commissions are growing faster than revenues.

So you plot YoY growth rates for revenues & commissions.

Problem: The chart of YoY growth rates is not convincing

Take a look at the chart. It doesn’t convey the message that we want. At best it says “revenue growth is less than commission growth”

revenue-growth-vs-commission-growth-problem

How to convey the message “Commission growth is a problem for us”?

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Doing Cost Benefit Analysis in Excel – a case study

Published on Jan 28, 2015 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs, Financial Modeling
Doing Cost Benefit Analysis in Excel – a case study

Imagine you are the in-charge of finance department at Hogwarts. So one fine day, while you are practicing the spells, Dumbledore walks in to your office and says, “Our electricity bills are way too high. As the muggles don’t accept wizard money, we have to find a way to reduce our power consumption.”

So you summoned the previous 12 month utility bills to examine energy consumption patterns, and pretty soon you realized that most of the electricity consumption is due to the light bulbs. You suddenly have a brilliant idea. Why not replace the light bulbs with a variety that consumes low power? A light bulb moment indeed.

Your next step is to figure out what varieties of light bulbs are out there. Fortunately this is easier than catching a snitch in a game of quidditch. A quick search revealed that there are 3 types of light bulbs:

  • Regular incandescent bulbs (the kind Hogwarts currently uses)
  • Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs (CFL)
  • Light Emitting Diode bulbs (LED)

Now your job is to do a cost benefit analysis of these options and pick one.

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Please help me design our new course – “50 ways to analyze your data”

Published on Sep 10, 2014 in Analytics, Learn Excel
Please help me design our new course – “50 ways to analyze your data”

Hi friends & readers of Chandoo.org,

I have an exciting and awesome new training program for you. 50 ways to analyze your data is aimed to give you critical data analysis & charting skills necessary for your success as an analyst (or manager). I want to make sure that this course offers you best content & value. I need your help in designing it. Please take a few minutes to read this short post & share your feedback.

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Remove duplicates & sort a list using Pivot Tables

Published on Sep 27, 2010 in Analytics, Learn Excel, Pivot Tables & Charts
Remove duplicates & sort a list using Pivot Tables

Removing duplicate data is like morning coffee for us, data analysts. Our day must start with it. It is no wonder that I have written extensively about it (here: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8). But today I want to show you a technique I have been using to dynamically extract and sort […]

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Data Tables & Monte Carlo Simulations in Excel – A Comprehensive Guide

Data Tables & Monte Carlo Simulations in Excel – A Comprehensive Guide

If anybody asks me what is the best function in excel I am drawn between Sumproduct and Data Tables, Both make handling large amounts of data a breeze, the only thing missing is the Spandex Pants and Red Cape!

How often have you thought of or been asked “I’d like to know what our profit would be for a number of values of an input variable” or “Can I have a graph of Profit vs Cost”

This post is going to detail the use of the Data Table function within Excel, which can help you answer that question and then so so much more.

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Pareto Charts – How to do pareto analysis using Excel?

Published on Sep 2, 2009 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs, Featured
Pareto Charts – How to do pareto analysis using Excel?

A Pareto chart or pareto graph displays the importance of various factors in decreasing order in columns along with cumulative importance in a line. Pareto charts are often used in quality control to display most common reasons for failure, customer complaints or product defects. The pareto chart is a great way to do the pareto analysis. Today, we will learn how to use excel to make a pareto chart.

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Generating Random Phone Numbers

Published on Nov 20, 2008 in Analytics, Learn Excel
Generating Random Phone Numbers

Often when you are writing code or testing an application, it might be helpful to have random phone numbers generated for you. Here is an excel formula that I use: =value(left(substitute(rand(),”0.”,””),10)) try these 2 instead (thanks to John) =RAND()*(9999999999-1000000000)+1000000000 =RANDBETWEEN(1000000000,9999999999) [needs analysis toolpack add-in or excel 2007] Even though it works most of the time […]

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Extracting Unique, Duplicate and Missing Items using Formulas [spreadcheats]

Published on Nov 6, 2008 in Analytics, Learn Excel
Extracting Unique, Duplicate and Missing Items using Formulas [spreadcheats]

Often I wish Microsoft had spent the effort and time on a data genie (and a set of powerful formulas) that can automate common data cleanup tasks like extracting duplicates, makings lists unique, find missing items, remove spaces etc. Alas, instead they have provided features like clippy which are intrusive to say the least. So […]

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Adding Box Plots to Show Data Distribution in Dashboards [Part 6 of 6]

Published on Oct 29, 2008 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs, Learn Excel
Adding Box Plots to Show Data Distribution in Dashboards [Part 6 of 6]

This is a Guest Post by Robert on Visualization Techniques for Excel KPI Dashboards. This 6 Part Tutorial on Management Dashboards Teaches YOU: Creating a Scrollable List View in Dashboard Add Ability to Sort on Any KPI to the Dashboard Highlight KPIs Based on Percentile Add Microcharts to KPI Dashboards Compare 2 KPIs in the […]

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Making Pie-charts look Sexy – The CNN’s tax burden analysis chart

Published on Oct 29, 2008 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs
Making Pie-charts look Sexy – The CNN’s tax burden analysis chart

There is always a debate about how good or evil pie charts are. While visualization purists believe pie charts should be avoided at all costs, newbies find creating and using pies very easy and often over do it. I have blogged few techniques involving pie chart visualizations like in-cell pie charts, speedometer charts, donut clocks […]

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Sorting Text in Excel using Formulas

Published on Oct 22, 2008 in Analytics, Featured, Learn Excel
Sorting Text in Excel using Formulas

Sorting text is such a day to day activity that it always surprises me why Excel hasn’t provided a simple spreadsheet formula for doing it. Of course you can use the sorting menu command (menu > data > sort) but this requires manual steps (or VBA). Most of the times we get raw textual data […]

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KPI Dashboards – Compare 2 Decision Parameters [Part 5 of 6]

Published on Oct 9, 2008 in Analytics, Charts and Graphs, Learn Excel
KPI Dashboards – Compare 2 Decision Parameters [Part 5 of 6]

This is a Guest Post by Robert on Visualization Techniques for KPI Dashboards using Excel. This 6 Part Tutorial on Management Dashboards Teaches YOU: Creating a Scrollable List View in Dashboard Add Ability to Sort on Any KPI to the Dashboard Highlight KPIs Based on Percentile Add Microcharts to KPI Dashboards Compare 2 KPIs in […]

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