Using Crystal Ball

6 Pages Posted: 21 Oct 2008

See all articles by Sherwood C. Frey

Sherwood C. Frey

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper


This note offers a brief introduction to the key steps in the use of the Crystal Ball software system.




Crystal Ball® is a software system that complements Excel by facilitating the conversion of a traditional “best estimate” electronic spreadsheet into a “risk analysis” model. More specifically, Crystal Ball® allows the user to define cells as entire distributions of potential values instead of single estimates. As a result, the modeler can simulate a large collection of potential final outcomes instead of a single outcome and display the results in various graphical presentations.

The use of Crystal Ball® involves the following major steps:

Build a Traditional Best-Estimate Electronic Spreadsheet

Because Crystal Ball® is truly a complement to Excel, a best-estimate spreadsheet can be built in a previous Excel session and imported in the Crystal Ball® system or built from scratch within the Crystal Ball® system.

. . .

Keywords: software

Suggested Citation

Frey, Sherwood C., Using Crystal Ball. Available at SSRN: or

Sherwood C. Frey (Contact Author)

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business ( email )

P.O. Box 6550
Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550
United States


Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics