You don’t want your users to
make assumptions about data in your Excel spreadsheet until you have all the
results. One way to prevent this from happening is to use conditional
formatting, which will hide the results until you have all the necessary data.

Let’s say you are recording
poll results for five polling stations in cells E4 through E8. Cell E9 contains
a Sum formula that totals the polling data. Here’s how to keep the results in
E9 invisible until the polls close:

  1. Format the font color in E9 to White (or the
    cell’s background color).
  2. Go to Format | Conditional Formatting.
  3. Select Formula Is from the Condition1 drop-down
  4. Enter =Count($E$4:$E$8)=5
  5. Click Format.
  6. Select Automatic under Color in the Font tab, and
    click OK.

When the results from all
five polling stations are complete, the font color for the sum of those results
will change to black.

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