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Preparing your Excel Spreadsheet for Imports

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In order to facilitate the import process, you should take a few steps to prepare the source data that you want to import. Below are a few tips that will aid in preparing the data set prior to starting the import process.

  1. Remove all formulas from the data set that you want to import - data that is the result of an Excel formula will not import correctly. To remove the formulas from the data set, copy the set and paste special -> values. This will remove the formulas, while retaining the appropriate values the user intends to import.

  2. Correct duplicates in alternative and criteria names - Each of the alternatives and criteria in the decision requires a unique name. If you know there are duplicate names (exact matches) among the criteria names or alternatives names, rename one of the items to a unique name.

  3. Move all of the import data to a single Excel Workbook and if possible a single Excel Worksheet. This will reduce the amount of time required to navigate through multiple source files or to select specific worksheets within the source file. The import utility is designed for users to repeat the utility for each import type (e.g. New Alternatives, New Criteria, Alternative descriptions, Criteria descriptions, Ratings data, and Budget Resource data).

Note: The preferred Decision Lens import formats (data organization) are shown below:

Alternatives/Criteria/Ratings (Import Format):

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