Microsoft Excel Overview | Uses of Microsoft Excel

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Uses of Microsoft Excel

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Tools developed in Excel can save your company time and money.

Microsoft Excel is one the most versatile environments for developing advanced tools. Maybe your first question asked when developing an advanced tool is, "Can we build it in Excel?"

The Microsoft Excel components that are used to build things.

In a nut shell, Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet tool that is capable of performing advanced calculations, analyzing data, presenting information in various visual interfaces and integrating information from different programs. That is just for starters. Microsoft Excel is comprised of organizational units called workbooks. A standard workbook contains worksheets and chart sheets that can be viewed by clicking on their tabs at the bottom of the workbook.

Microsoft Excel Workbook, Worksheet and Chart Sheet
In the workbook example above, you can see a worksheet and the tabs at the bottom of the window you click on to view each program element. When you save your work in Excel, it is saved in a workbook file with a basic extension of .xlsx.

Worksheet: A worksheet can perform calculations; control what people type; color cells based on logic; store, query, organize and analyze data; display shapes, pictures, charts and controls like a web page; they are extremely versatile. A worksheet is comprised of millions of cells. The job of a cell is to store typed data. It can also store a formula that performs a calculation. A cell can also store data and refresh it from an external data source such as a database.

Microsoft Excel Worksheet Elements
The sample worksheet above contains a view of some its most important elements and functionality. Notice the tab at the bottom that says Sheet1, you click on a tab to view a worksheet. In Excel, a user learns to combine these elements together to form a solution. The trick is to know how to combine them and have them operate as one. We do.

Chart Sheet: A chart sheet's job is to present a chart (graph) developed from data stored on a worksheet or from some other data source. They come in all different flavors like column, line, pie, sunburst, waterfall,... the list is pretty extensive. They can be formatted many different ways and they update when their sources change

Microsoft Excel Chart Sheet
In the chart sheet example above, the notorious UFO pie chart is being displayed. Mix in some transparent gradient formatting, a whole lot of 3-d effects and the look speaks for itself. It's good to know that even if the data is not good news, at least the chart looks great.

Some key tasks that Microsoft Excel can perform.

Think of Microsoft Excel as a modular tool set that can be rapidly configured to accomplish a desired task. Some of Excel's key tools include:

By using Microsoft Excel, company funds and time are not invested in developing software tools from the "ground up" in computer languages that take large staffs to maintain.

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