Excel Telecom Tricks – Dynamic Named Ranges

Dynamic Named Ranges are unquestionably one of the most important tricks for automating Excel Telecom Dashboards and recurring reports. Dynamic Named Ranges (DNR) are exactly what the name implies: an Excel named range whose size can change automatically.

Excel Telecom Tricks
Excel Telecom Tricks

It’s hard to imagine a real-world example of a recurring report which does not benefit from Dynamic Named Ranges (DNR). DNR makes many complex things simpler, and some otherwise impossible things possible. You’ll see huge benefits if you begin using DNR in your reports after reading this article.

I’ve already written many Excel Telecom Tricks. If you’ve followed along and applied these tricks, your Dashboards and reports should already have improved dramatically. You should be well along to complete Excel Automation.

This trick might be the key piece you are missing. Why do you need a DNR? Here are some typical use cases.

  1. Adjust the Print Area
  2. Expand Pivot Table source data 
  3. Extend a chart series

In this article, I’ll illustrate the first 2 use cases to show you exactly how to create DNR.¬† I’ve written another article automatically extending a chart series. Continue reading “Excel Telecom Tricks – Dynamic Named Ranges”

Excel Telecom Tricks – Error Correction

It happens all the time: equipment in a Telecoms network stops reporting traffic statistics. It’s often a problem, though not always the one you think.

Excel Telecom Tricks
Excel Telecom Tricks

The problem can be caused by a failing component somewhere along the data delivery path. You might think that’s the problem.

More likely, the device is under excessive load, and it stopped reporting stats to dedicate all its processing power to providing service.

Of course, it is up to you to figure out which it is. Fault Management systems might help by alerting you to the failing component. But if the issue is excessive load, the solution lies on a different path.

Many telecoms components are designed to provide service as their number one priority over all others. When that priority is threatened, low-priority tasks are discontinued. From the perspective of the equipment, we say it’s designed to shed low-priority load when under stress.

Stress is often caused by an anomalously high load, or by a capacity shortfall. An anomalous load could be triggered by a natural disaster, weather, a civil disturbance, or anything where large numbers of people begin using the network at the same time.

A capacity shortfall means you best start preparing a Capital budget request to fund a capacity augment.

But those aren’t the problems I wanted to discuss. I want to discuss how you can design your Excel Dashboards and recurring reports to handle errors and data dropouts. The types of data dropouts I described above happen all the time. Having an Error Correction strategy built-in will save you tons of time and avoid long explanations. Continue reading “Excel Telecom Tricks – Error Correction”