I will include a help guide for the staff using the spreadsheet so that they will be able to access help when they are having difficulties. The help guide will be on hardcopy so that the user does not need to connect to the internet to access the help. It will be much quicker and easier to have a hardcopy help guide linked to the spreadsheet that way it is more efficient.
Investigation and analysis of the problem
Belle du jour – Background information
Belle du jour is a single business that sells dresses for special occasions. It was first established in 1994 and since the year 2000 they feel that expanding the company will bring a lot of success. The shop has expanded their stocks and sells hair accessories along with the dress and other accessories like the jewellery and shoes. They would like the opportunity to expand that company into a chain business. The company is based around the South west of London, in the south east of England.
Belle du jour is situated near Staines high street. Here is a map showing its location:
To access the company by road take the M25 junction 13 or A30 directly into Staines town. There are plenty of Car Parks situated throughout Staines, the nearest is opposite Debenhams Department store. The nearest main line station is Staines, or underground is Hatton Cross. The nearest bus station is opposite the Blue Anchor pub.
Here are the details of the shop.
There are 4 employees in this company they are all sales assistants that also work at the reception area.
The manager of Belle Du Jour is Josh brown.
I need to conduct the following research from the manager:
- How much money is spent purchasing the stock?
- How much salary does each person receive?
- How much stock is normally brought?
- What the company would like to see on the modeling page?
I will consider asking the technical director these questions:
- What content would you like to see in the help guides?
- What form of validation checks are available to me with the software that I will be using?
- What form of network based help guides would you like?
I will include these questions in my survey for the staff at “Belle Du Jour”
- Would you consider yourself as computer literate?
- Do you know how to use excel spreadsheets?
- Would you like to see the figures on separate sections?
- Would you like instructions on entering text and data?
- Would you like instructions on changing formulas?
- Would you like instructions on changing validation rules?
- Would you like instructions on adding and using functions?
- Would you like instructions on linking spreadsheets?
- Would you like instructions on protecting worksheets?
- Would you like instructions on changing page properties?
- Would you like instructions on adding Printers?
- Would you like instructions on loading your work?
- Would you like instructions on saving your work?
- Would you like instructions on backing up your work?
Interviews with the key personnel
Josh brown, manager of belle du jour
Our shop is quite successful at the moment; we are always looking for ways of gaining more customers. At the moment our company has only one shop in Staines and is looking to expand the company. However we need to make sure that we are financially able to do this. We cannot afford to make any mistakes.
I would like this spreadsheet package to show me all the costs involved in an easy to use layout. I would also want to be able to predict what would happen if our costs go up.
Colin smith – Technical Director Belle du jour Inc.
I am very enthusiastic about seeing a development in the company. In the future I would like to see our company expand all over the UK. My main concern is that it will be too complicated to use. We have a wide range of IT skills in this company. However it would be a waste time learning how to use a difficult package if they don’t have to. I think it would be very useful if you included an online help guide. I would like it to be web based if possible so that our employees could use the help guide anywhere on the network using a standard web browser rather than having to use costly software. We want to keep track of our finances in the cheapest way possible so we don’t lose too much profit.
The contents of the guide need to include:
Basic instructions on how to use the spreadsheet
Instructions on how to use your package
A more advanced section that includes such things as changing formulas and validation rules.
A page that has an e-mail help link where you can specify a particular problem and possibly a page with an information link where staff can view the common queries and problems.
Belle du jour inc. Employee suggestion questionnaire
Results of survey
Summary of investigation
Analysis of data and overview of the spreadsheet
The different pages I will be having on the spreadsheet are:
- Home page - This will be the main page where it shows the company name and the menu of links available.
- Summary of finance – This will show the current financial situation of the company’s business.
- Revenue – This shows the type of product they sell and the amount spent on each of these items.
- Wages finance – This will show the amount of each staff’s wages.
- Bills finance – This will show the different type of bills that they receive, the company of the bill and the amount they pay each month.
- Profit – This will show the current balance of profit for the current month.
- Predictions – This will show the predicted amount of profit for the next few months and will also include a graph to show the data information.
- Stock finance – This will show the supplies they sell and purchase. It displays the amount they order per week, an approximate price of the item and a brief description of the item.
- Help guide – This will give details on how to use the spreadsheet i.e. How to change formulas and validation check etc.
The layout of the spreadsheet will look like this:
I used the colours yellow, pink and blue because it is the company’s website colours and theme.
I think these colours are attractive to females this is good because the staff and customers are females as the shop only sell dresses and jewellery.
The special features that I will include in my spreadsheet are:
- Headings - this will be on each page so that you know what the table is showing.
- Validation checks – this is so that if an error occurred the computer will be able to tell you.
- Formulas - this is so that it will be efficient to use and a lot more accurate than typing the calculations into a calculator as you can make mistakes.
- Links – this is so that the information can be linked onto a different page rather than having to search through the other pages.
- Pound signs – this will be used to show the type of currency.
I will use headings because it will be clear to the staff, what each table is showing. It will make the spreadsheet in an understandable format.
I will use validation checks because it will only allow correct information to be entered.
I will use Formulas because it will save time working it out. These formulas will be useful to my spreadsheet.
I will use Links in my spreadsheet as you can click on the links to jump to the page you need instead of searching for the page.
I will use pound signs to show what the figures are showing and the type of currency it is.
The spreadsheet will have separate pages for bills, wages, revenue, predictions, a finance summary, online help guide and interactive predictions. The main page will be the summary of the financial situation of the company so that people can check and see at a glance the financial status.
The links will be available on every page this is so that it will be more efficient as the links can be used from any page. If links on all the pages then it will be organized and clear. To make the spreadsheet not confusing I will put the links in the same position. This will make sure that it is easy to find the links rather than having it in different places on the pages. I want the spreadsheet to be easy to use and be in a clear format so that staff can understand how to use it.
I will use graphs to summarize the data written so it can be shown in data and picture form. I will be creating a graph for the financial situation and the predictions.
Design of solution
The background colour that I have used is lilac. I chose to use this colour for the background because it is a colour that fits in well with the gold writing. I used Gold writing for the company name and the list of links because this is the company’s theme colour. The gold represents the special occasion.
There are links on the left of each page. This links are underlined so that the staff is aware it is a link. It stands out when it is underlined because it is shows that it is important.
The title of the spreadsheet is in bold so that it stands out to show the staff what the table is showing.
I used the colours yellow, blue and pink for the table because the company’s theme fits in with the colours. These colours are mostly feminine as it is aimed at female staff working in the company.
In the table the text is written in black as it stands out from the colours of the table.
I have placed a menu of links on every page in the same position so you can access the links from all the pages and this makes it more efficient to use. I decided to place the menu of links on the same position because there will be a clear format to every page instead of having to search for the links.
The formulas that I used are
- (Autosum) e.g. =SUM(A1:A2).
- Multiplication e.g. =B9*1.05
- Subtract e.g. =A1-A2
- Linked cells
I would recommend the following computer for users to run my spreadsheet on:
- AMD Athlon XP processor 2600+
- 512Mb DDR RAM, 80Gb Hard drive
- 15" TFT Monitor
- DVD Rewriter Drive
- DVD ROM drive
- HP DJ5650 Colour Inkjet Printer
- PB DSC-220 2.1M Pixel Digital Camera
- Games Pack & Digital imaging Pack
- Windows XP Home Edition
- 1 Year FREE Onsite Warranty
The total cost for this hardware package is £899.99 including VAT.
I will need about 3 of these packages for the company. One of the packages will be in the manager’s office and the other two will be on the reception desk.
Data collection, data capture and input
This is the survey that I carried out