Excel 2010 – PowerPivot

If PowerPivot is the only new feature that Microsoft Excel 2010 has added, I would still go ahead to upgrade to Excel 2010.  It is especially valuable if your organization does not have business intelligence (BI) or online analytical processing (OLAP) tool.

PowerPivot is a self-services BI tool which enable Excel users to perform powerful data analysis using the skills they already have.  If you know what BI is, you can skip this article and wait for my blog on PowerPivot series which would cover more technical information and hand on demonstration.  I am only going to give a high level review of what BI and PowerPivot are in this article.

What is BI?

Before I answer your question, let me ask you some questions first:

  • Do your decision makers have to wait for their reports?
  • Do they receive consistent information, no matter who prepare the reports for them?
  • How many places do you need to go to get the answer?  Sometime, I don’t even know where to find the information.
  • How often is data rekeyed?
  • How much information do you need to manually aggregate?
  • How much data needs to be manipulated to get to an answer?

If you would like to improve your information generation processes, i.e. decision makers can have their reports quicker and provides a "single version of truth", then BI may be something you have been looking for.  You are not alone.  According to Gartner Inc., BI is the #1 priority for Chief Information Officers since 2006.

So what is BI really?  BI allows you to store data into a central repository from diversified sources, e.g. customer information, finance, human resources, inventory, or even from internet.  Then you can build report, dashboard or score card from a "single version of truth" source.  You can also quickly slice and dice data to conduct in depth analysis or look at it from different viewpoints.  Management can make prompt and informed decision and your organization would become highly efficient!

You have all the information at your fingertips!

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However, there are challenges to implement BI.  Especially if your organization is a small business, or your BI solution is for personal or workgroup use, then you may not have the technical knowledge, budget, or resources to implement a BI solution.

What is PowerPivot?

Microsoft has designed PowerPivot for business users.  It is integrated with Excel, software that most of us are very experience and familiar.  It can run on your desktop (or laptop) PC; so you don’t have to buy new server to implement it.  You can download it FREE from http://www.powerpivot.com/download.aspx.

It is a data analysis tool that can transform huge amount of data from virtually any source into meaningful information that management needs in seconds.


If you want to find out more about PowerPivot and see if it can optimize information channels within your organization, then stay tuned.  I am going to discuss more about PowerPivot in my blogs.


Andrew Chan is the owner and founder of ALG Inc.

We help you to make better and faster decisions!

About Andrew Chan
Andrew Chan is an Business Consultant who gives you accurate, consistent and timely information so that you can make better and faster decisions. He is an Associate of Society of Actuaries with over 20 years of IT experience. Apart from strong analytical skills and proven technical background, he was also a former system director at Manulife who had extensive project management experience. If you are looking for someone to gather, consolidate, validate, visualize and analyze data, look no further! Andrew can provide the most cost effective business analytics solution so that you can explore, optimize, predict and visualize your business. Don’t guess on any decision, no matter it is finance, operation, marketing or sales! Always ask for evidence!

10 Responses to Excel 2010 – PowerPivot

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  10. Jonathan Mukundu says:

    excelent articles. I am ready seeing the benefits of using power pivot

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