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News and resources on the latest trends in IT training and professional development

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You did WHAT with Excel?

Many users report being overwhelmed by “Pivot Tables” yet those who use them sing their praises. Truly advanced users take advantage of the ability to create automated “macros” or visual basic for applications (VBA) to make Excel do handsprings.

Many “Excel experts” point at Conditional Formatting as their favorite little-used capability, pointing out that this can be used to create an interactive “dashboard” on your spreadsheet. Nested formulas are also not for the faint of heart, but they make it far easier to explain strings if you’re into that kind of thing.

VLookup is also a popular function that gets less love because of its sophistication, but it’s far easier to use than functions like DatedIf, RoundUp, RoundDown, Evaluate, Convert, Roman, FactDouble, Bahttext and others. These are not even documented! (In fairness, your version of Excel may no longer include these.)

Some advanced users find it easy to use sophisticated capabilities like filters, index matching, flash fill, absolute references, freeze panes, statistical analysis, regression analysis, and many others.

Some of these terms are probably familiar to you, and others are not. That puts you in good company, as it is likely the case with most people. It can safely be said that, when it comes to Excel, you really don’t know what you don’t know!

A Popular Data Management Tool

Some may not be aware that Excel is among the favorite tools for those who manage data and often must transfer data from one platform to another. Many transfer the data first to Excel, then convert it to comma-separated values (CSV), or simply plain text. Then the converted data is transferred to the ultimate destination. This is a common use of Excel among database administrators (DBA).

The More You Know

You may be waiting for the big “So What?” So here it is.

The more you know about a platform with this much functionality, the greater the variety of tasks you can perform. The greater the variety of tasks you can perform, the wider your choice of available job positions and the higher salary you can command.

It is true that most people learn what they need to know to use Excel in their job and stop there. You can set a dramatic difference in your desirability in vastly diverse fields including finance, insurance, engineering, architecture, operations, and many more by being proactive and learning much more of what Excel can do. To get started, have a conversation with your United Training Account Manager today!