Business Forecasting with Google Sheets
- 4 hours on-demand video
- 7 downloadable resources
- Full lifetime access
- Access on mobile and TV
- Certificate of Completion
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- Make decisions based on business data
- You will learn how to use Google Sheets
- You will understand how and why to smooth data and pick the best approach to apply
- You will learn easy to understand, powerful forecasting techniques than can be easily implemented in a spreadsheet
- You will learn how to transform data to make forecasting easier and more accurate
- You will understand how to use charts to analyze data quickly and guide your analyses.
- You will enhance your business skills and make more money!
- The student will need access to a computer, preferably a desktop or laptop, to listen and follow the lectures. The student will also need a Google account, perhaps acquired for email, in order to use the spreadsheet application to answer questions. An account is not needed to just follow the lectures. However it is recommended that the student be able to use Google Sheets to try out the techniques on different data and to become familiar with Sheets' functionality by "doing".
In this Business Forecasting with Google Sheets video course, I introduce you to Google's online spreadsheet application, Sheets and how to use it for forecasting.
Learn to forecast the future with your business data
- Why forecast?
- Smoothing noisy data
- Analyzing for trendlines
- Transforming data
- Forecasting future values
A powerful skill to increase your value and earnings.
Millions of people use spreadsheets today, usually at the the office as a data entry form. Very few actually build spreadsheets unless that is their job. The dominant spreadsheet, Excel is often bought by students but rarely used, and most working adults only have access to it at work.
Until now. Google's online spreadsheet "Sheets" has become a powerful tool through rapid iteration. While still not as powerful as Excel it does have a number of very useful, unique features. But most impotrtant. it is free to use. You can build spreadsheets at home, while on a cellphone, tablet or laptop while traveling, indeed anywhere with internet access.
This course focuses on using Google Sheets to do one of the most important business functions - forecasting.
It is a powerful, full featured, cloud based spreadsheet that can be harnessed for business forecasting in a collaborative environment, and the results directly embedded in live web pages for internal and external communication.
Content and Overview
The course uses Google sheets, a number of which are publicly available to the student. In addition there are links to web content and documents with more explanation of the concepts used.
I have broken down the content into easy to manage chunks so that you can focus on a concept and experiment and test yourself. You can complete this course in an evening or weekend and be ready to do work on Monday, although I recommend working with your own data and the data I provide to gain confidence in your new skills.
I start with some evidence of why the skills this course teaches are career drivers. Then we discuss what forecasting is. We start with the basics of smoothing data to remove noise, and then move on to techniques of implementing trendlines to forecast with. Throughout the course, each point is made using data that you see being analyzed in a live spreadsheet demonstration, that you can replicate on your own computer to nail down and internalize the technique.
Competency doing real work relevant to business is a career enhancing skill in today's job market. This course will give you a strong start in applying those skills to your business and employment.
What am I going to get from this course?
- 32 lectures and over 3 3/4 hours of content
- Understand how to analyze historic data to predict the likely future
- Learn how to use built-in and custom functions to extrapolate future values
- Able to work at home on your computer at your own pace
- Visual training method, offering users increased retention and accelerated learning.
- Lifetime access to me to help with your own data.
- Unconditional Udemy 30 day money-back guarantee - that's my personal promise of your success!
2 new lectures added on errors to avoid with trend analysis. These are common mistakes amateurs make that you can avoid in your own analyses and look more professional when examining analyses from your colleagues.
So start learning today. Because being a technology dinosaur isn’t going to get you a promotion or raise!
- Alex Tolley
- This course is primarily focused on young, profesionals who want to apply forecasting methods to the business they are in, in order to improve business performance and enhance their careers by becoming the "go to" person for using a spreadsheet. This course is appropriate for professionals who already know what a spreadsheet is and are somewhat familiar with what they can do, but have not yet acquired the skills to use it for forecasting. Because this course uses the free, browser based Google Sheets, the student can learn the techniques at home, with only an investment in time. The techniques can be applied to other spreadsheets, e.g. Microsoft Office Excel or OpenOffice Spreadsheet, although this course is expected to be reconstructed for these platforms. This course is not suitable for students who are completely unfamiliar with spreadsheets, or have no interest in enhancing their career prospects by helping their company solve planning problems.
Why taking this course will:
- make you indispensable to your boss
- increase your salary
- improve your career prospects
Use Google Trends to analyze what people are searching for shows that demand for learning spreadsheets is increasing. Google Sheets has exploded recently as new, powerful features have been added. catch this rising wave and surf it to financial success.
This lecture explains the relationship between forecasting and extrapolation and understand the difference.
- Forecasting is a subset of extrapolation
- Forecasting uses time data
- Forecasting always looks forward to the future
Simple forecasting using the built-in FORECAST function.
FORECAST function lakes argument of x and t range of data and the x value of time that you want to forecast a y value.
Avoiding the using "data from the future" when averaging.
Averaged values are placed at the last time period so that the average value never uses data from a future period.
Understand the idea behind exponential smoothing and how to apply it.
A simple method that takes the previous estimate and actual data to make a new estimate of the current data.
Adding non-linear trendlines to charts.
- Use scatter chart
- select non-linear type - e.g. exponential
- view best fit with R^2 value
- Does the trendline look like a good fit? - tests
A brief overview of how to determine a non linear trend in data. Shows how to recognize a good trend line and how to use log plots to get linear trends from more complex data.
- Types of trendlines
- Tests for good fit of trendline
- Transforming data with logarithms to make better trendline fitting
Looks at a real world example - forecasting future quarterly dividends from historic data downloaded from a financial portal.
- General Electric dividend data used as example to forecast future dividend stream
Forecasting CO2 concentration. Shows a real world example using published data and illustrates the limitation of models and the need for checking model parameters due to sensitivity.
- Use of real CO2 data from Hawaii observatory
- Fitting a trendline to data to forecast future CO2 levels
- Discussion of limitations of fitted terndline
Forecasting non-seasonal data with moving averages and trend lines
- Plot data
- Create moving averages
- Use MAVs to select trendline
A different approach to seasonal forecasting de-seasonalizing data, creating a baseline and then forecasting against the baseline.
- Use averages to ascertain trendline type
- Add trendline as a baseline
- Create seasonal factors for each season
- Forecast using baseline and seasonal factors
This lecture looks at tracking down a small company's overdraft problem. It builds on the forecasting already learned to investigate how a profitable company can have a deepening overdraft and how to fix it.\
- Chart P&L
- Estimate seasonal cash flow
- Chart cash flow
- Reduce cash outflows during low season sales
This lecture introduces scripting to create custom functions. It will show you how to code a simple exponential smoothing function that we met in lecture 12.