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Microsoft Excel is such a powerful program that it can practically power an entire business. It has long been relied upon for accounting, inventory, and more. But it has lesser-known features, big and small, that can help streamline your workflow.
Here are six ways Excel can skyrocket your productivity, from eliminating minor frustrations to reducing costly mistakes. Familiarizing yourself with just one of them can lead to an increase in income.
1. Convert to and from PDFs
Sometimes the only way to get the information you need is to get it from a PDF. But if you think converting PDFs to Word documents is a pain, converting to spreadsheets is an absolute nightmare. There is no perfect solution, but the best option is almost certainly using the PDF to Excel tool on Adobe.com†
You may not come across this scenario, which is lucky because you can only use this tool twice a month for free. You’re much more likely to want to convert your spreadsheets to PDFs, but it’s easy. Click File, Save As and choose PDF as file format from the drop-down list.
2. Dropdown Lists
One feature that can often save a lot of time is the ability to: Create Excel dropdown lists and menus. If you find yourself repeatedly referencing the same information or process, such as lists of names, cities, products, or anything else, you can quickly extract them from a list and complete the data entry much faster.
There’s no better way to make your workday fly by than by automating everything. Excel’s ability to automate repetitive tasks is one of its most valuable features, yet many users don’t even know it exists, let alone how to use it. No, we’re not talking about macros, which carry a bit of risk and can be difficult to scale. We are talking about VBA.
Microsoft developed Visual Basic for Applications for use with its Office suite because it allows businesses to save time while increasing accuracy by automating tasks, increasing profits and productivity. And don’t be put off by the fact that it’s a programming language. Workouts like the 2022 Ultimate Excel VBA Certification Bundle can help you quickly.
Excel automation almost always requires specialists familiar with VBA to set up. But since the benefits a company gains from automating tasks far outweighs the cost of doing so, they are usually willing to go for it, making VBA skills highly marketable.
The most effective decisions a company can make are based on reliable data. So data visualization using tables, charts and graphs is an essential exercise a company can use to determine how it is performing. However, the information is not as effective if there is a delay if you wait for the data to be formatted. That’s why Create Excel dashboards to see your business performance data in real time is such a game changer.
Your data is already in the spreadsheets, so dynamic dashboards can show you exactly what happens once the information comes in. The easy-to-read charts and diagrams not only provide essential stats at a glance, but they’re also shareable, so every stakeholder has what they need to make decisions.
5. Create and track invoices
Computers don’t make mistakes, but the people responsible for entering data do. Whenever a process requires human input, the chances of problems increase. And of course it takes time to fix those problems, which can lead to all kinds of extra costs. For example, errors in order processing can cause everything from losing a sale to bankruptcy. Creating or updating spreadsheets for tracking invoices and orders is therefore crucial.
You can set up forms in spreadsheets to ensure that new orders are entered correctly, including all required information. Save time and reduce errors during repetitive tasks by automating them or by scanning all incoming tasks. Create reports that can be integrated into dashboards or other sheets. You can even attach an invoice tracking sheet to your inventory and sales reports to consolidate vital business information.
6. Sync with QuickBooks
Two-way synchronization between Excel and Quickbooks has become possible in recent months, and the new Spreadsheet synchronization reduced manual data entry errors and CSV import/export complications in one fell swoop. You can add and edit bulk data in Excel and then sync it directly to QuickBooks Online Advanced without the learning curve of a brand new tool. There are ready-made templates and consolidated reports that can be used for multiple companies. Plus, you can access refreshed data with one click.
Each of these features can save you time and reduce the chance of costly errors. While QuickBooks Spreadsheet Sync will boost your accounting and the skills you can develop with the $39 2022 Ultimate Excel VBA Certification Bundle could really advance your career. Since you’ll be using Excel anyway, you might as well take advantage of the program’s features that can make your workdays easier and less stressful.