Business Intelligence Using Advanced Excel

At Mount Talent, we believe in training our employees so well that they can get any job they want and yet treating them so wonderfully that they never want to leave us. In pursuit of this endeavor, we embarked on an exhaustive journey to understand the challenges faced by those who handle teams- our stars with different levels of managerial responsibilities. While the soft skills and behavioral aspects remained significant bullets of this list, the ability to present, organize, calculate and evaluate quantitative data emerged as one crucial skill. Being in the business of recruitments, we are faced not only with tracking numbers but also people and their careers.

Borrowing from history, we applied divide and conquer and tackled the technical part first. We organized a weekly session of Advanced Spreadsheets and Data Visualization for our managers in the early hours of the workday.

With winters almost setting in, the first session began with an evaluation of the status quo of the degree of use of Excel and the challenges faced with the same. Like a painful majority of employees across the industry, the load of mismanaged data bore heavily on our leaders’ efficiency- something that we vowed to resolve ASAP!

We presented to them the wonders of data cleansing and how they could use it for data already created and validation techniques to make data management a consistent process throughout the organization. This was followed by techniques for atomic breakdown of data to ensure robustness and scalability. The simplicity of conditional formatting and its power as a tool to show at a glance what numbers fail to do created a zing that was almost tangible. Numbers now became pictures and icons that were beautiful to see and easy to understand. The overstated (and hence overused) data filter now paved way for more advanced pivot tables that organized, summarized and evaluated data in various possible ways. Once our champions had conquered these milestones, we graduated to data visualizations and dashboarding. Worksheets for practice were provided at regular intervals in addition to tricks and shortcuts being shared for interleaved learning- the root of all adult learning.

These were real time sessions where our skippers used these techniques during the training on their actual data, understanding and appreciating the beauty that is MS Excel. These highly interactive sessions eliminated a few important operational roadblocks of data maintenance and presentation, giving our leaders time to create more like them.

Like everything we do at Mount Talent, when something dragged us down, we pulled it up- WITH US!

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