Better way to link/embed Excel charts into PPT - so end user can edit in PPT


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Aug 18, 2011
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Our company (a market research company) likes to work in advance of final data by using vlookup formulas to pull the data we need to make charts. In other words, we vlookup the data for chart 1, make a small table containing the data we need, and then create a chart from this data. We then link the chart into PPT. We do this for 30-50 charts, depending on the report.

This works great for us, because we can set everything up in advance, and all the data automatically updates as more data is entered into the database.

This doesn't work well for one of our clients because they get either a PPT with links that they can't access or broken links (aka pictures) in their PPT report. This hasn't been a concern until now - but this client likes to tinker with the reports after delivery, and he wants full editing control.

Obviously, I could paste each chart as an excel chart object into the PPT, but this would have to be done right at the end of the reporting process, once the data is final, so it's not ideal. I tried pasting into PPT, but this also embeds the entire 50 sheet excel file into the PPT (so has the potential to create a very large file very quickly).

I am open to all solutions, but the one I would like to do is this - create the charts as I have described above in an excel file created within my PPT deck. Then, on each PPT slide, link to the excel file within the PPT deck. Anyone know if this is possible?
Hi there, and welcome to the forum!

I'm curious if this would work... could you send the client a file that already contains the PPT linked to Excel, as well as the Excel workbook? I understand the links would be broken for him, but if the two files were saved in the same directory, then I'm sure a little macro in the PPT file could update all the links at opening...

That was actually the first solution we looked at. Feedback from the client is that it works, but not always. From what I investigated, the macros change the links from absolute (C:/folder/file) to relative (/currentfolder) but this breaks if the files are opened from "recent documents", for example.

Last night, I tried creating a chart directly in PPT, but instead of manually entering the numbers, I entered the vlookups to our database, and this worked! So I might be on my way to a solution.

Hey, for reference, I haven't done a ton with charts and powerpoint linking. If you wouldn't mind keeping us up to date on how you get on with this, I'd really appreciate it. I know we have experts that drop by the do pull this stuff off, I just need to learn it myself. :)