Search Not Just Numbers

Tuesday 17 March 2009

Excel Tip: Use any Excel function in seconds

People often ask me if there is an Excel function for what they are trying to do, or how to use a particular Excel function and, after answering their question, I always direct them to the Insert Function button (denoted by 'fx', see image to the right).
If you don't know what this button does, read on.

You do not need to be an Excel expert to use any of the advanced function commands in Excel as this little button helps you find the one you want and then guides you through using it.

There is a search facility to find the function you want or, if you prefer, you can browse categories of function. Each one shows you a short description, the format of the function and the arguments required.

When you have found the function you want to use, you do not need to type it in - the wizard does it for you, prompting you for each argument with a more detailed description of what is required at each stage.

I am a pretty advanced user but still find it very useful when I am looking for a formula to do something new, and I am constantly surprised by how many users of all levels don't realise this facility exists

So, if you have never used the 'fx' button, take a look, it will save you a lot of time and significantly increase the range of your Excel skills.

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