Please note javascript is required for full website functionality.


Final Friday Fix: July 2021 Challenge

30 July 2021

On the final Friday of each month, we are going to set an Excel / Power BI challenge for you to puzzle over so that you can get your “Excel fix”. Challenge your office colleagues to see who can solve the puzzle quickest. There are no prizes at this stage: you are playing for bragging rights only!

This month, we thought we would turn you all into model auditors…

The Challenge

Recently, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) called for comments on a paper entitled How to Review a Spreadsheet. To be fair, we did offer comments, but we were told that the intention was not to provide procedural notes for undertaking a model audit. That wasn’t our intention, but we moved on.

But it got us thinking. And hey, that’s always dangerous.

A model review, by the above inferred definition, appears to mean a simple “quick check” of a simple spreadsheet. Others (including ICAEW!) might disagree, but most would reach consensus that a model audit provides a formal “due diligence” approach to reviewing calculations in a model, usually leading to providing an opinion, often for model users, financiers, etc.

Most of the time you don’t need an audit, unless heavy reliance is placed upon a model or finance is sought. However, a simple check may be insufficient too. You need to be a little more robust – and imaginative. And that’s the theme of this month’s Final Friday Fix.

We have a model for you to peruse:

It’s not the world’s most complex workbook and it may be downloaded here.

We think there might be the odd, ahem, issue in this model. So the challenge is: how many can issues can you find? Do you have what it takes to have one of the most exciting, life-affirming jobs ever created (i.e. be a model auditor)? Uh oh, my sarcasm detector has overloaded…

Sounds easy? Then why not have a go? We’ll publish one solution in Monday’s blog. Have a great weekend in the meantime!