Chapter 4. Advanced Excel Skills


Excel is a software application of almost unlimited depth and complexity. There is no way to count the number of features it offers, but they must run into the thousands, if not tens of thousands. Fortunately, most business analysts do not need to become experts in all aspects of Excel, but they often find that they need to develop expertise in a few specialized domains within Excel. Which domains are relevant depends on the job they perform as well as on their level of interest in Excel and spreadsheet modeling generally.

The previous chapter presented the Excel features we believe the great majority of business analysts should know. Even there our coverage was not exhaustive. For example, every analyst should know the basics of cell formatting, but only a few will need to learn and retain all the various ways to customize formats in a workbook.

In this chapter, we pursue several specialized topics in more depth. These are features of Excel that intermediate and advanced spreadsheet modelers use to make their work more efficient, to make their spreadsheets easier to use, or to make them more powerful. We suggest that novice modelers skip this chapter until they have developed at least a basic familiarity with the skills covered in Chapter 3. More advanced users can skim this chapter, focusing on topics of particular interest or relevance to their work.

The chapter covers the following topics:

  • Keyboard shortcuts

  • Controls

  • Cell comments

  • Naming ...

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