In This Chapter
This chapter discusses various techniques that you can use to look up a value in a table. Microsoft Excel has three functions (LOOKUP, VLOOKUP, and HLOOKUP) designed for this task, but you may find that these functions don’t quite cut it. This chapter provides many lookup examples, including alternative techniques that go well beyond Excel’s normal lookup capabilities.
A lookup formula essentially returns a value from a table (in a range) by looking up another related value. A common telephone directory (remember those?) provides a good analogy: if you want to find a person’s telephone number, you first locate the name (look it up) and then retrieve the corresponding number.
Figure 8.1 shows a simple worksheet that uses several lookup formulas. This worksheet contains a table of employee data (named EmpData). When you enter a last name into cell C2, lookup formulas in D2:G2 retrieve the matching information from the table. The lookup ...