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Chapter 9: The Worksheet and Group Working

This chapter explains the worksheet and how you use it to manage your work.

9.1 Introduction to the Worksheet

The worksheet is the central point for keeping points of interest. The worksheet keeps track of what's of interest and why.

To show the worksheet, click Open Worksheet on the Euro menu. The worksheet lists the points of interest in the project together with a range of information on each one. Figure 9-1 shows an example worksheet.

Figure 9-1: Worksheet

The worksheet can hold information on the following elements of a project:

9.2 Populating the Worksheet and Tracking Progress

You use the worksheet to manage your work, which involves:

Ultimately, the worksheet contains all the monetary points of interest, together with other relevant information in the form of categories and notes, plus an audit trail which gives a history of the analysis.

9.3 Manipulating and Navigating the Worksheet

There are a number of techniques for moving around the worksheet and for finding worksheet entries quickly and easily:

To achieve this:
Do this:
Sort the entries in order Click a column heading to sort the entries according that column's attribute.
Widen a column Drag the divider between one column heading and the next.
Filter the worksheet, to show only the required entries Click sshort descr Display Filters and specify the entries you want using the wildcard * as necessary.
Select a category for a worksheet entry Select the entry and click to display the category list. Select a category and click Add.
Display an index number for statements On the Worksheet tab of Options, check Prefix index in statements.
Display the source code Select a data item or statement and click sshort descr View Source Code. You can also press F9 to show the source view in a separate window.
Show statements for the selected data items (multiple entries are allowed) Select the data items and press F3
Show data items for the selected statements (multiple entries are allowed) Select the statements and press F3
Select multiple entries Click one entry, hold down Shift and click another entry to select a whole range of entries.
Click one entry, hold down Ctrl and click other entries to select the entries you click.
Show all columns in full Press Ctrl + F2.
Change the visible category Click on the Category of the required entry, click the down arrow, then click the category you want displayed from the drop-down list.

9.4 Allocating Worksheet Categories

Processing the worksheet entails allocating a category to each entry. You can use this method to indicate, for example, whether the entry definitely requires investigation because it's a point of interest, why the change is required or perhaps to document the type of work required for the euro changeover. You could even use it to record the types of error anticipated from the entry (reconversion, depreciation inconsistency and so on).

You can assign categories to a worksheet entry by selecting the worksheet entry and clicking .

A worksheet entry can have as many categories as you wish. When you sort the worksheet by category and an entry has several categories, the entry is sorted on the visible category.

There is a default categories file, default.fct, which you can use. Alternatively, as administrator you can specify your own. If you decide to do this, it's worth spending a little time to develop a system of categorization and get it right, because it can save a great deal of investigative effort.

Note: Only the administrator can create new categories, amend or delete existing ones, although all users can allocate categories to worksheet entries. See category in the Help index for how to do this.

The EuroSmart defaults categories are:


Ultimately, every worksheet entry will have an A category, which signifies that the entry's analysis has been completed and shows whether it is a point of interest.

The B categories indicate the type of point of interest.
The X categories indicate the type of modification required.

9.5 Worksheet Resilience to Changed Source and Database

A worksheet is completely tied to an application. If the application source files are modified the worksheet gets out of step and you're warned about it. Do not edit the source files of an application after creating a worksheet for it.

The worksheet does, however, survive a reparse of the Revolve database, as long as the application source files are the same. This enables us to upgrade the base Revolve without forcing you to recreate your worksheet.

9.6 Group Worksheet

You can share a worksheet among a group of users, so that information gathered during the finding process can be made generally available.

Briefly, the group worksheet requires that:

  1. A group worksheet administrator sets up the group and local worksheets and allocates the work to the group members.

  2. The administrator, optionally with a small team, establishes the category system, tool settings and any customized tools.

  3. As a group member, you work on the entries allocated to you in your local worksheet. You can view your local worksheet on its own or combined with the group worksheet. You examine and adjust the entries in your local worksheet. You don't directly change information in the group worksheet, but you can copy entries from the group worksheet into your local worksheet and change the entries locally.

  4. The administrator merges the changes from users' local worksheets into the group worksheet. The administrator is responsible for resolving the conflicts between users' worksheets, if for example, one user requests that a data item is removed and another wants to keep it.

9.6.1 Administering the Group Worksheet

The main areas of responsibility for the administrator are:

Your organization needs to decide who should take on these responsibilities. One or more people can take on responsibility for some or all of them. For some tasks, the administrator needs the authority to delegate work and dictate procedures, and for other tasks, the technical knowledge to handle conflicts in the group worksheet

To access the worksheet administration functions, check Enable Administration on the Worksheet tab of Options Options.

9.6.2 Setting Up the Project and Group Worksheet

As administrator, you are responsible for creating the project and the group worksheet and for initially populating the group worksheet with the candidate data items and statements from EuroSmart or the other integrated tools.

To create a worksheet click Administration Administration and then Create a new group worksheet. Alternatively, you can save an existing worksheet as a group worksheet. A group worksheet is the same as an ordinary one, except that only you, as administrator can update it, and the users have just read-only access.

To allocate worksheet entries to group members, click Administration Administration and then Assign items to owner. You also need to copy the relevant entries to the owners' local worksheets. Note that ownership is informational only and is to help you in delegating the group's workload and in resolving conflicts when updating the group worksheet with users' changes. However, the concept of somebody being responsible for each point of interest might be very useful.

We suggest splitting up the work by source file, although you can split it up in any way that suits you. Notice that the data items in working storage copyfiles are likely to be shared by more than one program, and so, to avoid conflicts, each of these common data items needs one owner.

When you have set up the project and the worksheets, you need to tell each user:

9.6.3 Viewing the Group Worksheet

As a group member, when the administrator tells you where the project and worksheets are, you can proceed as follows:

  1. If the administrator has created a local worksheet for you with the entries that you own, load this worksheet, using Load Load from File. The name of your local worksheet is shown in the title bar.

    If the administrator has not created a local worksheet for you, you take a copy of the project locally and this creates a local worksheet for the project automatically. Alternatively, you can access the project across the network, but this can incur some performance degradation, depending on the speed of your network and the size of the project.

  2. You enable group working, on the Worksheet tab of Options Options, where you point to the group worksheet.

Now the group and local worksheets are displayed together. There are some visual cues for differentiating the entries in the two worksheets:

We recommend that while you are working on a group project, you keep group working enabled in the Options, even if you don't want to view the group worksheet. This ensures that the administrator's log stays up to date with any changes you make to your local copy of a group item.

9.6.4 Updating the Worksheet Entries Locally

As a group member, you don't directly change information in the group worksheet, but you can copy entries from the group worksheet into your local worksheet and change those copies locally. To copy a group worksheet entry, right-click the entry in the worksheet and click Copy local.

Note: There is no locking process. In theory, you can copy any entries from the worksheet and update them in your local worksheet. However, in practice, you should copy only the entries assigned to you.

When you change your local worksheet, the changes are automatically saved and the group administrator can take your worksheet and merge it into the group worksheet without any action from you. However, your organization might require some action. For example, you might need to save the worksheet to a separate file, using Save Save to File, or you might need to tell the administrator that you have some changes to be merged.

When your entries are merged into the group worksheet, those changes are deleted from your local worksheet. If any entries are not merged for some reason, such as they conflict with existing entries, those entries are left in the worksheet. This means that you should check your worksheet after is has been merged and investigate any entries that were not merged.

The administrator might update the group worksheet with others' changes while you are working. You can request notification on the Worksheet tab of Options. To update your view of the worksheet, right-click in the worksheet and click Refresh.

9.6.5 Merging Users' Changes into the Group Worksheet

As administrator, you are responsible for merging users' local worksheets into the group worksheet. Depending on the procedures in your organization, you merge the local worksheets:

Before merging in users' changes, you must backup the group worksheet in case you decide to restore the previous version.

You use the Merge wizard to merge in the information from the users' local worksheets and to resolve any conflicts between the new entries and the existing ones. When you merge the worksheets:

9.6.6 Backing Up and Restoring the Group Worksheet

As administrator, you should backup the group worksheet before making any changes. To do this manually copy the worksheet project-name.mdb to group-file.bak.

You might need to restore a previous version of the worksheet if, for example, the new worksheet has some incorrect entries or if there are many conflicts when merging. To restore a worksheet, copy the backup file group-file.bak to project-name.mdb.

Copyright © 1998 Micro Focus Limited. All rights reserved.
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