When we first purchased Bloomberg I well remember the reaction of my team to its weird DOS-like interface, scrolling data and primary colours: bemusement and fear chiefly. If you’ve never used it before this is likely to be your reaction too. Bloomberg is unlike any other database you’re likely to come across. However, and it’s an important however, it will also prove to be one of the most comprehensive and powerful databases you will ever use too, with its constantly updating real-time data on equities, industries, economies, financial instruments, and the world’s news.
Running a busy information service we have found Bloomberg to be a vital product within our suite of databases – the ‘go-to product’ if you like that quickly became out first port of call for all manner of enquiries.
We are very aware that the interface is quite off-putting and that the content is hidden in menus that you won’t instantly know the codes for, but help is at hand, three kinds of help actually:
- Bloomberg now offers a predictive text function so whatever you’re looking for you will be presented with a set of useful options.
- If you hit ‘HELP’ on the keyboard twice you will open up an instant chat session with the Bloomberg helpdesk. They are super-helpful, very responsive and aim to point you in the right direction within 10 minutes. Better still, if they feel your enquiry is too complicated to explain via chat they will phone you to walk you through it.
- We recorded a video in which Meg Westbury and I work through the top 25 most popular/most useful codes in Bloomberg, incorporating a live demo of the interface. A great place to start if you’ve never used Bloomberg before.
There are four Bloomberg terminals in the Information Centre (I’m afraid it’s not accessible remotely) and you can easily create your own personal account to use on them. We are happy to offer 1:1 support on using Bloomberg, just ask a member of staff or email [email protected]. We’d be very happy to help you get started.