On our Excel financial modelling courses we always advise training delegates to keep models self-contained, with no links to external spreadsheets. This avoids problems with broken links for example if someone wants to email an Excel financial model to a client. Without external links, they only need to email one self-contained Excel spreadsheet to the client.
Imagine you inherit an Excel financial model that does in fact contain links to an external spreadsheet. Here you can download an example linked Excel spreadsheet: edit links. What options do you have once you open a financial model and receive the “Edit links” prompt?
Update links: an example problem with broken links
If you click on “Update” Excel will try to find the source spreadsheet. Because Excel can’t find the source spreadsheet it will give you two choices: “Continue” or “Edit links”.
If you click “Continue” Excel will proceed without updating linked values (the revenue numbers in our example). Clicking on “Edit links” will give you the opportunity to manually re-direct Excel to the source spreadsheet. Because you don’t have the source Excel spreadsheet, you will have to select “close”. Whichever option you select, without the original source Excel model you can’t update the links to the revenue figures.
Identifying links in an Excel financial model
At any time you can see whether your financial model contains links to external spreadsheets. On the “Data” tab, select “Connections”, “Edit links” – edit links will be greyed out if your financial model contains no links to external Excel spreadhsheets. If your model does contain external links, clicking on “”Edit links” will bring up a dialogue box, giving you the opportunity to direct Excel to the linked spreadsheet (click on “Change source”).
Financial modelling course tips: edit links
Our course tips on this one are to, as far as possible, avoid links to external Excel spreadsheets. That avoids the financial modelling problems detailed above.
You’re at the end financial modelling course material
Congratulations: you’ve reached the end of the course! This is the final lesson in the financial modelling course material on Excel functions.
If you’ve managed to get to grips with all of these functions, the ones that our course delegates regularly ask about and find useful, you should pause and pat yourself on the back. You’re well into advanced modelling territory now!