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Find The Boots

Rantings from a few corporate types about life, technology, travel, guns, politics, and everything good in the world.

Fun With Excel

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Our company, I hasten to say, has a fancy dancy on-line webby system that delivers our work-of-art expense accounts directly to uncaring hourly employees in Hydrabad.

But if you use Excel the following trick might get your attention:
Let's say the employee recently took a client out to lunch and is claiming a fairly reasonable $100 for it. This sounds good to the manager, so she approves the request and sends it on to the payroll team. Unbeknownst to her, the $100 in the expense report was not a static value added by the employee, but rather a formula that would change to the fraudulent amount of $1,000 when viewed by the payroll employees. The payroll guys see the value for $1,000, verify that it was approved by the manager, and promptly over-pay the employee to the tune of $900.
Ok, lemmie break that down for all the other PHB's (PHB = Pointy Haired Boss in Dilbert) out there: if your boss looks at the spreadsheet it says lunch for four (cough) was $100, but when accounting brings it up do do data entry the amount is $1000 and the total increases.

Wow, that is really cool. No, I mean it's BAD BAD BAD.

What would be even WORSE would be if the spreadsheet was opened in, say, six months that it would go back (permanently) to $100 and thereby confuse the audit department forever.

Whatta pair of boots!


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