Software

Tips for teaching and using Excel

If you need help with charting, data entry, or formatting in Excel, TechRepublic has plenty of ideas for you. Power users and trainers have contributed many suggestions about how to get the most from this powerful program.


Excel is a powerful program with almost endless uses in a business setting. The more users know about what the program can do, the more work they can do with it. If you’d like to brush up on your own skills or pick up some tips and examples for the next time you have to teach Excel, check out some of the articles TechRepublic has to offer about using Excel.

Speeding up data entry
If you’ve got a lot of information that needs to be entered quickly and efficiently, read Jeff Davis’ article on this topic. Excel’s Form option is much faster than the hunt-and-peck or enter-and-arrow-over methods.

Worried about mistakes?
Getting the data into a spreadsheet is half the battle, but you’ll be on the losing side if the data is full of errors. Read “Prevent Excel worksheet mishaps with data validation” to learn how to create built-in protection against errors.

Handy workarounds
Sometimes you think you know how something should work, but it doesn’t always turn out that way. Sometimes Excel’s logic can work against you, as Jeff Davis found when trying to help his manager with an Excel dilemma. He explained a satisfying workaround in “Forcing Excel to chart the X-axis you want.” The same solution could help you with a similar problem.

Jeff found another simple solution when a colleague asked him how to remove blanks from a column of entries in Excel. This is another solution that seems obvious but sometimes isn’t to someone buried in a problem.

A cool feature
Here is a nice feature that can help users who have to read data-heavy reports. Excel's color-coding feature can apply conditional formatting so thatdifferent types of data display with different fonts or in different colors.

A great resource on the Web
If you’re an Excel junkie or a super user who is always on the lookout for new tips and tricks, check out Mr. Excel. You can submit questions, peruse questions, and examine a file recovery utility.

Want more?
If you’re still looking for a particular answer or just want more information on Excel, do a search on our site. There are many more articles available.
Do you have a favorite tip or trick? Are you still impressed each time you use the fill handle? Where do you get the best information on Excel? Send us your suggestions so we can share them with other TechRepublic readers.

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