Excel users will find What’sBest! easy to learn and use. What’sBest! is designed to make optimization modeling a natural extension of Excel. You can quickly build models in a free form manner using standard Excel equations.
Begin Optimizing in Minutes
What’sBest! takes full advantage of Excel’s flexibility and ease of use. If you are comfortable using Excel, you will probably be able to begin building your first What’sBest! model within minutes of installations. For What’sBest!, all of the optimization information is stored in a natural manner within the worksheet. Constraints and relationships are expressed using standard Excel style functions. What’sBest! models are very visual and interactive — constraints display their status (violated, satisfied, or precisely satisfied).
Comprehensive Error Handling
What’sBest! makes tracking down any problems in your optimization model easy. It provides comprehensive model checking, warnings and error messages. If a problem is encountered during the solution process, What’sBest! provides a detailed description of the problem, and lists cell addresses that are contributing to the problem when appropriate.
Creating a What’sBest! model is as easy as A-B-C
A – Adjustable Cells
Specify the cells in your Excel workbook that What’sBest! can adjust to find the best solution. In traditional math programming terms, the Adjustable cells are the variables of your optimization problem. Your Adjustable cells may be in one neat cell range or scattered throughout the workbook. You can allow them to take any value or restrict them to whole numbers (i.e., integer values).
B – Best Cell
Specify the cell you wish to maximize or minimize. In traditional math programming terms, the Best cell is your objective function. The most common Best cells are to minimize cost, waste, or risk; or to maximize profit, production, or utility.
C – Constraints
Specify the restrictions or limitations on the problem. These are the relationships that must be satisfied for the solution to be feasible. Examples of constraints might be the amount produced cannot exceed the production capacity, or the amount shipped to the customer must be equal to the customer’s demand. Constraints are expressed using standard Excel style equations, so they are easy to read and understand. What’sBest! constraints display their status (i.e., you can see if they are violated or met).
Organize your Model on Multiple Sheets
What’sBest! allows you to build optimization models that take full advantage of the three dimensional modeling capabilities of Excel. The ability to organize information over several tabbed sheets in a single Excel workbook file can be especially useful for large models and models that involve multiple periods or locations.