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Excel Spreadsheet Automation with the QUERY Formula

Pull data, automate spreadsheets, and more with the QUERY formula.

The CData Excel Add-In for FinancialForce provides formulas that can edit, save, and delete FinancialForce data. The following three steps show how you can automate the following task: Search FinancialForce data for a user-specified value and then organize the results into an Excel spreadsheet.

The syntax of the CDATAQUERY formula is the following: =CDATAQUERY(Query, [Connection], [Parameters], [ResultLocation]);

This formula requires three inputs:

  • Query: The declaration of the FinancialForce data records you want to retrieve or the modifications to be made, written in standard SQL.
  • Connection: Either the connection name, such as FinancialForceConnection1, or a connection string. The connection string consists of the required properties for connecting to FinancialForce data, separated by semicolons.

    There are several authentication methods available for connecting to FinancialForce: login credentials, SSO, and OAuth.

    Authenticating with a Login and Token

    Set the User and Password to your login credentials. Additionally, set the SecurityToken. By default, the SecurityToken is required, but you can make it optional by allowing a range of trusted IP addresses.

    To disable the security token:

    1. Log in to FinancialForce and enter "Network Access" in the Quick Find box in the setup section.
    2. Add your IP address to the list of trusted IP addresses.

    To obtain the security token:

    1. Open the personal information page on FinancialForce.com.
    2. Click the link to reset your security token. The token will be emailed to you.
    3. Specify the security token in the SecurityToken connection property or append it to the Password.

    Authenticating with OAuth

    If you do not have access to the user name and password or do not want to require them, use the OAuth user consent flow. See the OAuth section in the Help for an authentication guide.

    Connecting to FinancialForce Sandbox Accounts

    Set UseSandbox to true (false by default) to use a FinancialForce sandbox account. Ensure that you specify a sandbox user name in User.

  • ResultLocation: The cell that the output of results should start from.

Pass Spreadsheet Cells as Inputs to the Query

The procedure below results in a spreadsheet that organizes all the formula inputs in the first column.

  1. Define cells for the formula inputs. In addition to the connection inputs, add another input to define a criterion for a filter to be used to search FinancialForce data, such as Industry.
  2. In another cell, write the formula, referencing the cell values from the user input cells defined above. Single quotes are used to enclose values such as addresses that may contain spaces.
  3. =CDATAQUERY("SELECT * FROM Account WHERE Industry = '"&B4&"'","User="&B1&";Password="&B2&";Security Token="&B3&";Provider=FinancialForce",B5)
  4. Change the filter to change the data.