Spreadsheets can be such a useful tool when it comes to business and finances. You can use even a basic method to get it to make all calculations and spit out the end number you need.
However, spreadsheets, MS Excel in particular, have such a wide range of features, formulas, formatting options and macro tools that can turn your spreadsheet from one that only uses additions to one that can run reports, provide valuable insights into trends, and even make many of the mundane, time consuming tasks - automatic; you just have to know where to look.
My personal favourite? The excel Help guide (or key F11 on your keyboard). This help breaks down what formulas can do, what you need to enter into them to make them work, and even what any errors might mean has gone wrong. The unfortunate thing is that 99% of the time when an error appears - it’s because the human in front of the keyboard has done something wrong. Again F11 comes to the rescue! To make best use of your spreadsheets, if you don’t like to be adventurous with formulas, we would recommend a few key steps;
1. Spreadsheets like figures rather than text, so where possible use figures to represent your data.
2. Keep data as separate as possible as everything can be quantified, for example if you keep records of when things happened and record them like “04/05/20 14:00”, ty to keep these things separate - “04/05/20” | “14:00” - This way should you ever need to do anything with every record that happened on 04/05/20 it’s so much easier to do.
3. Always enter dates with a bracket / instead of a dot . - excel is very picky and doesn’t read dates like 04.05.20 - it thinks this is a word.
4. Always be organised with your data and even use different tabs within the spreadsheet - all your information is still there, it just may be easier to look at when not in a giant table.
Hopefully this has put some of your fears to rest. And if it hasn’t? Get in touch with us at Middleton PA Services and see how we can either offer a Spreadsheet consultation to help your spreadsheet work better for you, or we can build you your very own state-of-the-art spreadsheet. Book an appointment with our resident expert, Luke, today!
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