March  2003

Vol. 5, No. 3

'Beyond Excel: Easy SPC charting' goes cross country with new features

As the creation of charts from data becomes increasingly critical to organizations, interest in PQ Systems’ “Beyond Excel: Easy SPC charting” seminar has increased. The seminar has been offered in sites from San Francisco to Philadelphia, making it easy to get away from one’s office for a half day to learn, using new features in CHARTrunner software. A session is scheduled this month in King of Prussia, PA (March 20), Pittsburgh, PA (March 21) and in the Chicago area in April.

Utilizing data in the decision-making process is a fundamental part of most organizations’ management of process improvement. Sometimes this represents a response to an accrediting or standards organization, but often it is the company’s own interest in creating meaning from data that drives people to learn more about charting.

Printed pages of numerical data not only have limited impact, but cannot be easily understood, according to PQ Systems development manager Steve Daum, who led efforts to develop CHARTrunner, a stand-alone software program that creates charts from Excel, Access, and other databases. And Excel or other database programs have only limited charting capabilities and are often tedious to create.

New features in the latest version of the software provide capabilities for parameter queries, chart review, and cusum charts. Users can use statistics as chart titles, and the program offers new expanded chart styles and style editor.

The half-day Beyond Excel seminar teaches participants how to generate process performance charts and perform statistical analysis using data that is collected, stored, and managed by Microsoft Excel or other applications, including Access, Oracle, or SQL Server.

Participants have found the half-day, $99 seminar useful and interesting. Mike Farnam of Unilever says that the seminar leaders “injected the right level of humor to make it fun and interesting,” while Gwendolyn Walker, US Army, found CHARTrunner to be “user-friendly, and used in conjunction with Excel should greatly reduce the time required to create charts using Excel alone.”


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