Understanding Excel

Understanding Excel

Understanding Excel and explaining what it can do for you is something of a challenge. First of all this is because Excel can do so much. We have laid out our services in the most informative way that we can. By adding more content over time this will help illustrate the full range and potential of Excel.

The basics of understanding Excel.

  • Workbooks & Worksheets – These are electronic spreadsheets that designed to hold any tabular data. This is as per the paper equivalent. – see Specifications and Limits for more.
  • Functions & Formulas -This is where Excel moves away from physical world and its limitations. Moving into the digital world  with what is a sophisticated electronic calculator. This is built in for use in any cells or range of cells.
  • Charts and Graphs – This is where the large range of visualisation tools in Excel start. These are quick and easy to set up by connecting to the data that you wish to plot. Any combination of which can be built into a dashboard bespoke to your needs
  • The Pivot Table – This is the ability to plot any data in columns against any other in rows. it takes a bit to get your head around it but it can be very useful in extracting specific data from a worksheet.
  • Data Connections – Excel can import and export data from almost any other source. In this Excel differs from all other software. Excel is a universal adapter that connects to everything. Where as other software looks to limit connectivity.
  • Data Control & Validation – This enables the user to set a data policy. Limit the type and scope of data to solely that which is required. Removing the potential for human error in the process.
  • Macros – Macros are the basics of automation. You can record yourself working on Excel and this is stored as a macro. Every time you play the macro it repeats the same actions that you recorded. These can be built into powerful bespoke applications.
  • VBA – Visual Basic for Applications – This is the language that macros are written in. This is used to edit the macros and add functionality using the VBA Editor. built in to Excel
  • Controls and Forms – Controls such as check-boxes and drop-down lists can be embedded on any Excel worksheet. Then linked specific cells for both input and output. Buttons can also be placed on worksheets and assigned to run macros on clicking. In the VBA Editor controls can also be placed on custom forms. Excel itself need not be visible when macros and the input of data are handled this way.
  • The VBA Project – The top level within the VBA Editor is the VBA Project for each workbook. This gives access through VBA to everything in the workbook. This includes forms and any further custom macros that you have written. It can also gives VBA direct access to any other software that supports VBA automation. Such as the rest of MS Office and Internet Explorer. It is this that enables connected bespoke automated systems.


This list will be  extended and added to in depth over time. But first of all it helps in understanding Excel.

For further help in understanding Excel please call or contact us.