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1 M o s t U s e f u l E x c e l C o m m a n d s Tommy B. Harrington 104 Azalea Drive Greenville, NC Computer Training YOU Can Understand!

2 Most Useful Excel Commands By Tommy B. Harrington Table of Contents GOTO SPECIAL... 3 CONSOLIDATE DATA... 5 FIXING WORDS THAT LOOK LIKE NUMBERS... 8 USING FILTER DISPLAYS ONLY SELECTED DATA SUBTOTALS SUMMARIZE INFORMATION REPLACE COMMAND REMOVE DUPLICATE RECORDS DATA FILTER ADVANCED Learn the easy-to-use commands that make Excel most productive. You ll be amazed at all Excel s commands for working with data and information. Discover commands for entering, editing, manipulating, and summarizing data in seconds. GOTO Special is an essential command for Excel users. Learn special techniques for using Excel s commands to clean up imported data and save hours of work. Learn about the command to fix Words That Look Like Numbers which you can be used to fix many problems when importing data from other programs and the internet. The Data Filter Advanced command is one of the most important commands for all Excel users to master. Use Special commands to select specific data within worksheets. Many shortcuts, techniques, and tips designed to make it easy to work with Excel s commands and save you time. Copyright Tommy Harrington

3 Excel commands are powerful and can do a tremendous amount of work for any Excel users. Learning these easy-to-use commands can make any Excel user more productive. You ll be amazed at all Excel s commands for working with data and information. Using Excel commands for selecting and summarizing data within worksheets can save you time. Mastering these commands is essential. GOTO Special The GOTO Special command has many valuable uses for Excel users. If you need to highlight (select) only number or formulas in a specific range or an entire sheet, this is the command. It can also be used to highlight visible cells or blank cells. Removing Blank Rows Removing blank rows could be done with the repeat key; however if many blank rows need to be removed there is a technique that provides a better way. To remove blank rows from a large amount of data, follow the steps below: 1.) Decide which column (there may be more than one) in your data has blank cells only where they are part of an entirely blank row. 2.) Select the column heading and all the data in this column manually. Now, to delete blank rows quickly 3.) On the Home tab click on Find & Select, and now click GOTO Special Earlier Excel versions: From Edit in Main menu select GOTO then Special Copyright Tommy Harrington

4 5.) Select the Blanks option and click OK. You have now selected ONLY the blank cells in this column. These are on rows that you wish to delete. Copyright Tommy Harrington

5 6.) Next, on the Home tab select Delete. 7.) Now, select the Delete Sheet Rows. Earlier Excel versions: Select Edit then Delete Entire Row and press OK Finished. Your data is still in the original order, but without any blank rows. Consolidate Data File combining can be used to produce budgets or consolidate production by day into a company-wide report. The key to combining files is the use of the Data Consolidate command. Here s how I would work for a weekly production. All spreadsheets are very similar; however they differ in the products listed. Different products are produced on different days; however on some days products are repeated. When these daily lists are consolidated, products that are alike should be combined. Using Data Consolidate we can perform a smart combine. All of our daily files should be opened and available to us. Then open a new workbook and give it an appropriate name like Consolidate-Week.xlsx. Copyright Tommy Harrington

6 Re-naming the sheet tab to Week will help. Now make sure the cursor is at cell A1 and click on Data Consolidate. 1. Click in the Reference box and use the Window command to switch to the first departmental workbook. Copyright Tommy Harrington

7 2. On this worksheet paint the columns that contain production numbers. IMPORTANT: Be sure to include the row headings as the first row you highlight and the column headings as the left column of the highlighted range and your numbers. 2. After painting the range, click the Add button. REPEAT this procedure for each department. Make sure the Use Top row and Left Column boxes are checked before proceeding. Copyright Tommy Harrington

8 When you have clicked Add for the last department, Do NOT click OK. Click Close and save your workbook. Now open your Consolidate-Week.xlsx file and save it under a named for the current week like Week2008_01_10.xlsx. This is now used for your consolidation. This is a trick I have learned in working with the Data Consolidate command. The Data Consolidate settings are copied with the sheet; therefore always leave your orginal and make a copy on which to perform the actual consolidate command. In this way as other consolidations are needed (and they will be each week), you simply open your master file and use it each week. To generate a report that contains live links to your departmental workbooks mark the Create Links box before clicking OK. If you need only a static report (one that does not change until the data consolidate command is issued again) then leave the Create Links box unchecked. Fixing Words that look like Numbers If you ever import data from another application or the internet, you may have a problem with words that look like numbers. If you try to sort these numbers, they do not sort numerically. If you try to use VLOOKUP they return the #N/A. Using Excel 2007 there is a simple way to fix this problem and convert the words (that look like numbers) to real numbers. 1. First highlight the entire column contain your words that should be numbers. 2. Now click the Data tab 3. Select Text to Columns Copyright Tommy Harrington

9 4. When the Text to Columns Wizard is displayed, simply click the Finish button to correct the problem. Copyright Tommy Harrington

10 Your words that look like numbers are now REAL numbers. Even negative number that were imported with the negative sign on the right were corrected to become REAL numbers. Using Filter displays only selected data You can use Filter to show only select lines of data from a list. Make sure you have the cursor on one cell in the list to be filtered; and remember the cell cannot be a blank cell. From the Data tab select Filter. Copyright Tommy Harrington

11 1. Click on the Button at the top in the Customer column 2. First click on Select All check mark to clear all selections 3. Now select Raleigh Foods from the list displayed Copyright Tommy Harrington

12 You can add the Units column by clicking on the next blank cell in any amount column and then clicking AutoSum twice. Copyright Tommy Harrington

13 Subtotals summarize information Sometimes it is necessary to subtotal information in am Excel list or database. If you list invoices, purchase orders, loans, production, or shipment information, you probably need to prepare some type of subtotal report on major categories in your list. This has always been a manual process until Excel. It is very important to make sure that your database or list does not contain any completely blank rows or completely blank columns. Look at the following worksheet: To have subtotals inserted for each customer in your list: First sort the list in customer order: Click in the Customer column (You must click on a single cell between A1 and A11) Click the Sort Ascending button on the Standard toolbar This groups customers together in alphabetical order. Highlight only one cell in your database or list Select Subtotals from the Data menu Copyright Tommy Harrington

14 In the Subtotal dialog box: Mark Dept in the At Each Change In area Mark Sum in the Use Function area Mark Order, Freight and Invoice columns in the Add Subtotal To area Copyright Tommy Harrington

15 Click OK Subtotal have now been inserted in your report. Not only have subtotals been inserted below each customer group, but also on the left side you find an Outline bar. Click the 2 button in the Outline bar rows and show subtotals only. to hide detail To reveal detail rows again, click the 3 button in the Outline bar. Copyright Tommy Harrington

16 To remove all Subtotals and the Outline bar select Subtotals from the Data menu Click Remove All OR simply sort on any column other the last column you sorted on before. Subtotals is one of the most powerful and easy-to-use features of Excel. It allows you to create custom summaries with just a few clicks. Replace Command The Replace command is often overlooked as a valuable command for Excel users. If you must make changes to you formulas or convert formulas to values, it is essential. Replace command to modify formulas The Replace command from the Home tab under Find & Select (shortcut = Ctrl+H) can edit a large number of formulas at once. In the following worksheet, the formulas in column E include the absolute range $A$2..$B$6. The range was written to small to pick up data below row 6. When the February data is substituted for the January data, the formula will not examine any data below row 6. In fact we should substitute a much larger range in case future data requires an even longer range. Correcting this situation by modifying all these formulas to include a larger range can be accomplished easily with the Replace command. Copyright Tommy Harrington

17 1.) Paint the range from E2 to E8 2.) Select Replace from the Edit menu or press Ctrl+H 3.) Type $6 in the Find what box 4.) Press the Tab key 5.) Type $100 in the Replace with box 5.) Click the Replace All button You could have made the range much larger if necessary, but make sure not to enter anything in this range except current monthly data. Copyright Tommy Harrington

18 Replace formulas with their values With a command you can change the results of a group of formulas into their look-alike value using Paste Special Values. Sometimes it is necessary to replace a group of cells containing formulas with the equivalent values; this can be done by first painting the range then click Copy or do Ctrl+C. Next, leave the same area painted and click Paste dropdown arrow on the Home tab. Remove Duplicate Records Excel2007 can remove duplicate records from a list. If you have a list of data that may have duplicates to remove then open the file and select a single sell in the list. Then from the Data tab select Remove Duplicates. Copyright Tommy Harrington

19 In the Remove Duplicates dialog box mark the columns that you wish to compare when searching for duplicates. If you leave all selected, all fields in each record will be compare to find duplicates. Click OK Finally click OK to remove the duplicates. Copyright Tommy Harrington

20 Data Filter Advanced Almost everyone is familiar with the AutoFilter command under Filter in the Data tab, but few use Advanced Filter from the same menu. Advanced Filter is a powerful tool for building models and for producing reports in an Excel macro program with VBA. The Advanced Filter command involves identifying one area and setting up two new areas in the spreadsheet. You must make sure your list range adheres to the Basic Rules for Excel, then setup a Criteria range and a Copy To range. I usually set these two new areas up on new worksheets by making two copies of the existing original sheet and then deleting the data not needed. On the Advanced Filter dialog box you would select the Copy to another location option. Next, place your cursor in one sell containing data on the original sheet. Then from the Data tab select Advanced Filter In the Advanced Filter dialog box you would highlight all three of these special areas, including the column headings. By copying these sheets you can be sure column headings are typed exactly the same in all three areas. Copyright Tommy Harrington

21 Start by clicking on the CopyTo sheet. Then execute the Advanced Filter command. Click in the List range box and then click on the Data sheet and paint your data including the column headings (if your column headings are in row 1 you can paint your data by painting entire columns). For the Criteria range click on the Criteria sheet and highlight your headings and the row(s) containing the criteria below the headings. Then on the CopyTo sheet highlight ONLY the row of column headings. This command will automatically erase the old data on this sheet and place only the data select by your criteria. Now click OK. Copyright Tommy Harrington

22 The Advanced Filter command, when executed, will copy data from the original data and place it in the Copy To area. It does not remove the data but simply makes a copy. This copied data can then be moved with the copy and paste command to another sheet for printing or further analysis. The technique is one of the indispensable techniques for pushing data to build multiple reports by different regions, territories, countries, states, or other categories. Pushing data is the process of creating new reports, normally from data obtained from a mainframe. Usually data in this type of analysis represents many products, many areas, and many categories. By using the Advanced Filter technique, we can pull out different categories for different states or different products or different territories and place this data on an individual sheet for further analysis. This is one of the techniques for automating report preparation with Excel. Pushing data is one of the basic techniques you need to master in order to automate reporting with Excel. Creating Unique Lists Advanced Filter has one special feature. We mentioned earlier that sometimes a unique list of categories is needed from your data. If you have a category column that lists the same categories many times but you need a unique list of these categories for producing summaries, Advanced Filter Unique can do the job. In fact this can produce a list similar to that generated by a PivotTable, however, your List is more flexible because you control when it is refreshed and what information it contains. To generate a Unique List of categories, the data column for that category is highlighted or selected. Once the column containing all the categories is highlighted, the Advanced Filter is performed with a blank cell selected as the Copy To range and the Unique Records Only option is checked. Recording this action in a macro, and after making minor VBA changes, this action could be repeated when new data was copied to your report program. Copyright Tommy Harrington

23 If your organization needs training, application development, or consulting on Microsoft Office software Excel, Access, Word, and PowerPoint; for free estimate on any project please contact: Tommy Harrington Copyright Tommy Harrington

24 Notes: Copyright Tommy Harrington

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