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An Actuary without Excel Is Like…

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Don’t Ask Me to Live Without It

I’ve retired this past year, yet I still won’t give up Excel. I have several Excel workbooks open on my laptop this very instant. Not a day goes by without me doing something in Excel. One of the few apps I felt worth paying whatever necessary to have for my iPhone and iPad was the Office suite that would put Excel in my hand. And every computer or iDevice I ever use through the rest of all my lives will have Excel installed and heavily used.

For my personal post-retirement use, surely one need not have to attempt the software conversion debates roiling conference rooms from government agencies to Wall Street to insurance companies to so-called reserve analysts through almost any business around the world. Like, what other software could possibly step in now to fill the huge void that would open up if I were to try to serve my individual retiree’s interests and responsibilities without Excel? That’s a seriously rhetorical question. There is nothing else.

Sure, we still purchase the H&R Block package each year to complete our taxes. I still do much of our backroom tax work on Excel; and if I knew a way to actually complete the filing with the IRS for payment or refund directly through Excel, I would. And sure, we use Pearland’s billing system for our water bill; and sure, we rely on the bowling league to use its own software to keep track of its own records; and sure, my iPhone has other software for keeping track of the steps I walk or the schedules I want to keep or my progress on the books I’m reading. Even so, don’t be surprised that I have Excel doubling up on them all, and doing a better job at it than any of them.

Need I seriously argue the issue when talking as a retiree? as an individual? We’d be arguing about the difference between me having to learn hundreds of different individual mediocre apps, each of which typically can’t even do the full task given it much less even imagine any of the other tasks – vs – a single powerful robust tool that can do it all and then some.

But even before retirement. Yes, and I’m proud to claim it — I am one of those actuaries who could never have done the advanced actuarial work that I did without Excel.

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Written by macheide

1 December 2017 at 6:52 am

Posted in excel hero

Tagged with , ,

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