In RPM 24 we changed the way RPM writes data to Excel. Previously, RPM would sort the rows as they were in the view. With RPM 24, the rows are written to the Excel file in an unsorted order and the file is given a sorting instruction that Excel executes when the file is opened. Essentially we have moved the work of sorting of view download rows from the RPM database to Excel. We made this change so RPM would better handle large view downloads. 

Depending on how you are sorting your view in RPM, Excel may sort your view differently.

For example:

  1. Null values at the bottom. This is the most significant difference. Excel sorting always puts blank cells at the bottom for both sorting by ascending or descending. In RPM sorting sorting ascending shows blank rows first as they are treated as having the “lowest” value.

  2. Form number. When RPM sorts the form “Number” column it excludes non-numeric characters and then sorts numerically. Excel doesn’t have that ability and so will sort the “Number” column the same way RPM sorts the “Number (abc)” column, alphabetically. If you are using a process with leading zeros and don’t have different prefixes from form to form then this won’t make a difference.

  3. Duration fields in RPM are sorted numerically using the raw seconds value. In Excel they are sorted alphabetically. This only applies to duration fields that contain the units label, normalized duration columns that are just the numeric value are sorted the same in RPM and Excel.

  4. Date field values older than Jan 1, 1900 are not sorted as dates in Excel. Excel sorts modern dates the same as RPM, but dates before 1900 are then sorted after in Excel as text.