What is Excel – A Brief Introduction
In order to automate the various functions and management of data, Microsoft has developed an electronic spreadsheet application which is called as Microsoft Excel. With Excel you can collect large amounts of data and that too you can put in the form of rows and columns. The data which we can enter through is alphabets, numbers, graphs, charts, pictures.
With Excel application you can even add, delete, modify, link and relocate the data. In Excel you can have 256 columns and 65,536 rows per worksheet. With this tremendous data storage functionality, you can search, sort and filter the data as per your requirement.
Why one should know Microsoft Excel?
Earlier data management and calculative work was done manually. But with excel everything became automated. If we see, all the business fields including finance, statistics, marketing, engineering, human resources especially the businesses which deal with large amounts of data (numbers, statistics) uses Excel
Some important Features of Excel
- Hyperlink: With this we can link one file to another file.
- Pivot Tables: Pivot Tables are used for creating and maintaining records like employee records, product database.
- Clip art: Even we can add images, audio, video clips in Excel.
- Charts: with Charts we can put numerical data in the pictorial format which is much easier to compare.
- Macros: With Macros we can record event which is used to performed repeated tasks.
- Sorting : The data can be sort as and when needed in any direction
- Filters: With this we can filter the required data from huge set of data.
- Page layout: with page layout option we can set up the page as per our comfort level
- Arithmetic and Logical Functions: Excel provides various mathematical functions like ADD, SUBTRACT, Multiply, division etc. It also provides logical functions like AND, OR, IF etc.
- Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is used for designing user friendly interfaces.
Application of Excel
- Database Management
- Recording of Financial statements
- Performing calculations
- Inventory Management
- Analysis of data
- Creating user friendly interfaces
Professionals and the use of Microsoft Excel
As said above wherever you work, you will find every workplace has priority for MS Excel. Ease of use, efficiency are the features which makes MS Excel popular.
Investment Banking Analyst
The analysts are required to perform financial modeling and for that excel si very essential. They use it for calculating ratios, drawing graphs, comparison purposes.
These are the other set of people who breathe with excel.
These people required, to perform complex regression analysis, segment indications for that purpose excel is the tool which they use.
These are the people for whom Excel is the brain. There majority of work is dependent on calculation whether it is terms of calculation, or analysis.
These people use Excel for carrying out market surveys and analyzing the markets results. The tools which they mostly use charts, graphs, clip images etc.
As these people analyses business as a whole and their decisions are turned into actions.
Apart from this people in Human resources department uses it for employee database management, salary calculation etc. Operations and logistic departments uses it for keeping product records.
How do businesses use Excel?
Business creates employee and resources schedules which is coded and is updated whenever there is any change.
In Accounting information is recorded and calculations are performed and this information can be changed as and when required.
Even businesses use it for tracking product sales on a daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly basis.
Finding Return on Investment
For writing financial statements and calculating Return on Investment and other ratios by creating various financial statements in Excel.
For managing huge customer database, businesses use excel.
Learn how to organise, format and calculate data smoothly. Develop skills to master excel tools, formulae and function. Analyze data from different perspectives.
Who should be Proficient in Excel?
- All the students as their future demand it.
- Charted Accountant (CA), CFA’s, Finance students
- Working professionals.
- People who dream to work as Finance Analyst, Market Analyst, Research Analyst, Investment Banker for them Excel is the language that they should speak.
For those who are fresher’s and want to enter the job market then Excel is the landing point for them.
There is no prerequisite for learning Excel. People from any background or at any stage should learn Excel.
- Excel file is portable can be sent through email
- Excel files can be protected through password so that only intended user can see it.
- Excel can be directly connected to OLAP databases.
- As Excel is a part of the Microsoft office, there is no need to buy it separately.
- All types of functions including financial are inbuilt therefore no need of additional program.
- People can get training for learning excel.
- If we use one file for huge data it may execute slowly.
- You may unaware of the viruses which may be attached through macros with excel files.
- For ease of use we may need to use different sheets, where there are chances of loss of data.
- Also there is a limitation on number of columns and rows that we can use per sheet.
- Some users find it difficult to use
Useful 20 Keyboard shortcuts to speed up your work in Excel.
Excel shortcuts for both Windows and Mac, side by side use.
Some Important keyboard Short cuts
1 [Ctrl]O Open a workbook
2 [Ctrl]N Create a new workbook
3 [Ctrl]S Save a workbook
4 [Ctrl]P Print a workbook
5 [Ctrl]W Close a workbook
6 [Shift][F11] Insert a new worksheet
7 [Ctrl]9 Hide selected rows
8 [Ctrl][Shift]9 Display hidden rows in selection
9 [Ctrl]0 Hide selected columns
10 [Ctrl][Shift]0 Display hidden columns in selection
11 [Ctrl][Page Down] Move to the next worksheet in a workbook
12 [Ctrl][Page Up] Move to the previous worksheet in a workbook
13 Arrow keys Move one cell up, down, left, or right
14 [Ctrl] and an arrow key Move to the edge of the data region
15 [Home] Move to the beginning of a row
16 [Ctrl][Home] Move to the beginning of a worksheet
17 [Ctrl][End] Move to the end of the used portion of a worksheet
18 [Enter] Move down a cell in a selected range
19 [Shift][Enter] Move up a cell in a selected range
20 [Shift][Tab] Move one cell to the left in a selected range
Advanced Excel – VBA programming
Microsoft Excel also provides Visual Basic for Applications (VBA), which deals with programming aspects of VB. VBA allows the spreadsheet manipulation which is impossible to perform manually. We can even design attractive user interfaces through any tasks can be performed easily. And for this we just need to write the event driven code
With Microsoft Excel accounting and financial tasks can be performed very easily.
Consider a small example where a bank want to calculate interest for its 10000 customers in such case if one does it manually it is really miserable , but with VBA macro, once the coding is done it is performed easily.
The functions in VBA are:
- Built-in functions provided by VBA
- Excel’s own functions
- Custom functions that one may develop for use