Excel, the "cocaine of finance"

Compliance Pressures Prod IT to Limit Use of Spreadsheets - Computerworld

"It was painful, but he stuck to his guns and broke us free of the Excel drug," Baltrusch said. "We began to have one version of the truth."

[The link above is to page 1 of the article, while the quotes on page two]

"Excel is the cocaine of finance," he said. "Once you start using it to calculate your final numbers, you can't stop." To alleviate the problem, the company's new chief financial officer forced the finance department to generate data directly from its J.D. Edwards & Co. applications."

Although I'm not related to finance in any way (even personally, if you get my meaning!!) I have often been frustrated by others relying excessively on Excel when presenting large amounts of data.

All along I thought I was the only one railing against this, so it's nice to see that others have concerns great enough that, coupled with regulations about proper financial reporting, they are trying to "break the habit".

To my friends (you know who you are): there's a message in this for you :-)

For once, I'm not railing against Microsoft. They took a winning concept -- Lotus 1-2-3 -- and carried it to its logical extreme. But with great power comes great responsibility. And not everyone likes the second part. Ask Spiderman :-)

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