Many people "jump in" when they develop a spreadsheet-based DSS with
little or no planning. After all "it's easy to change or edit a
spreadsheet application". WRONG! An effective, attractive and used
spreadsheet-based DSS is more likely to result if a developer carefully
plans the application and develops a design.|
The first planning step is to clearly define what decision task the spreadsheet-based DSS will support. What is the purpose of the proposed DSS?
The second step is to determine what analyses and results the decision maker will want to examine. What outputs are needed to help make the decision(s)?
The third step is to determine what user inputs and stored data are needed to perform the analyses and provide results to the decision maker.
The fourth step is to determine what calculations and in many cases models are needed as part of the DSS.
The final step is to plan and sketch the user interface of the DSS. How many worksheets will be needed? What design elements like spinners and buttons can enhance analyses? What layout is best for tables, charts, input information?
appeared in DSS News 10/13/02