19 Dec 2016 Tracey George
Microsoft Excel is probably the first tool that everyone uses when it comes to data manipulation and management. This statistical and data manipulation tool is unparalleled in its user friendliness and versatility. Microsoft Excel is packed with some powerful features which gives it its unparalleled edge. Owing to a large number of tools and features it provides, there are often some features that go unnoticed during your learning period of Excel but are extremely useful. Let's check out some handy features that you may use to impress your boss and add value to your work.
Importing data from websites and the cloud
With Excel you can easily import important charts and stats from a website by adding the address of the data or chart in the question bar in the open command of the file menu. You can also choose to pull data from the skydrive account or share point. To do this, you simply have to click on "Add a place" in the open command of the file menu. Alternatively, you can also import data from SQL tables, XML files and several other places defined in Excel under the "From web" command of the "File" tab.
Quick visualization through Sparklines
The large amount of data in the tabulation and formatting of spreadsheets can sometimes get a little difficult to comprehend when you are in a hurry. To the rescue comes Excel's Sparklines feature which allows you to create stats visualizations which can be inserted in the cells right where the tabular data is. Simply select the cells you want to visualize and chose Sparklines from the insert menu of the ribbon bar.
Statistical functions made easy
Statistical manipulations can easily be performed through the functions provided in Excel Statistical manipulation can be especially useful when you are dealing with probabilistic data and need to work on permutations and probabilities. Two important statistical functions provided by functions are these:
It provides the probability of trial results with the help of binomial distributions.
This function helps in determining the total possible permutations of an indicated set of numbers for the given conditions.
Financial functions made easy Yes! Excel even helps you in your financial endeavors. With the financial functions provided in Excel you can conduct a number of financial manipulations to help you create a better business model for your own finances or for your organization. The important financial functions provided by Excel are these:
This helps in determining the number of periods which are needed for an investment in order to reach a predefined future value.
This function returns the equivalent interest rate for the given present value, future value and number of period for the investment.
Forecasting Forecasting is possibly one of the more interesting features of Excel which makes it helpful in creating better business and enterprise models and planning business tactics. With forecasting you can get probable future outcomes from historical data and patterns that you input in the program. Also, using the forecasting feature of Excel, you can create upper and lower confidence bands of your data in order to include flexibility for errors and seasonality.
Excel can be an extremely powerful and versatile tool if it is used in the proper way with knowledge of all its features. Using Excel in a comprehensive manner will add tremendous value to your work and make you stand out in your workplace where you will get work done with simplified ways of Excel.