Excel is a powerful program for handling complex data. The data can be in the form of numbers, text, or both. But there are many features of Excel that are not immediately obvious, and these can be extremely useful in analysing and manipulating data.
If you want to get ahead in your career, it is essential to learn how to use these features such as pivot tables, advanced charting, macros, and of course – VBA!
Excel can be used for a wide range of tasks, from managing simple lists to complex financial models. It is a versatile program that can help you improve your work efficiency, reduce errors, and save time.
So, if you want to learn intermediate Excel skills today, whether you are reading this from a business perspective and want to improve your team’s productivity or from a personal perspective and want to stand out in your next job interview, this guide is for you.
In this guide, we’ll look at the advanced excel features that will help you become more productive and efficient in your work.
Let’s get started!
Learning Basic Excel Functions
The better your understanding of the basic functions of Excel, the more confident and comfortable you will be when it comes to executing more complicated actions and tasks.
You are going to want to get comfortable with these functions if you want to stand out from the competition. These are the functions that will help you organise your data into something that makes data work for you.
There are five key basic Excel functions that can take your skills to the next level and put you or your team in the position to take the next step and unlock the real potential of this programme.
The SUM function allows you to add values. If you are managing a budget spreadsheet, for example, you can add the contents of a column or a range of cells to give you the final total.
This helps you make long or complex numbers more comprehensible. There are different TEXT functions to help you round up numbers to decimal places or combine them with symbols and text such as dates and times.
VLOOKUP helps you to find specific data in a row or a table, such as the amount of money spent on a product or the name of the person working on a project. You can search for an approximate match or an exact match.
This is a great help for anyone processing a large amount of data, on a database for example. As you would expect, it will give you the arithmetic mean of the numbers in the cell range that you have selected.
This helps you to join the words or data in a series of cells into a sentence. You can insert any missing words into the string of cells that you want to join.
Why Excel Knowledge Looks Good On Your CV
Everyone is looking for a way to stand out and having Excel knowledge will help you to stand out. Excel is one of the most versatile pieces of software and also one of the most widely used.
Employers will want to teach you their specific way of doing things, but it will look great if you can demonstrate that you have skills beyond the basics.
- Employers will not have to waste time training you.
- You can learn new skills more quickly.
- It demonstrates experience in your field.
Most people have some experience with Microsoft Office products, but surprisingly few can use Excel properly. Having intermediate skills will put you ahead of the competition.
Benefits of Learning Advanced Excel Skills
If you really want to stand out to any prospective employers, then you should think about taking your Excel skills to the next level.
Businesses are looking for ways that they can improve efficiency and cut down on wasted time. Having advanced knowledge of Excel means that you will be an important asset to them.
- You can find better solutions to data management.
- You can be more efficient and productive.
- You can work on more complex projects such as financial predictions.
If you are looking for a job in finance, or if you are launching a small business and want to stay on top of your budget projections, then advanced Excel skills are essential.
7 Excel Skills Employers Look For
It is rare that you will find a job advert that does not mention Microsoft Excel. It is such a key element of day-to-day business operations and knowing what they are looking for ahead of time will help.
Here are seven key Excel skills that employers are looking for when they put “Microsoft Office skills” as a requirement. Let’s break them down.
You will need to show an understanding of the functions of the most common Excel formulas. The ones we have listed above are the most important, but any additional functions you can master will be a bonus.
Data Validation And Protection
You will need to show that you can validate data according to their specific requirements. You will also need to demonstrate that you understand how to protect and lock data.
You will be using PivotTables to summarise your data. This is one of the most important steps to help you turn a mountain of data into something that is organised and easy to comprehend.
Every company is going to be different, but if you are going to be presenting spreadsheets to bosses or clients, understanding how to format data is crucial.
Macros save time when putting a complicated spreadsheet together. These are the actions that you can create which will cut out the need to perform the same task over and over again.
Charts And Graphs
To demonstrate an advanced understanding of Excel, knowing how to create a chart or a graph is key. A visual representation of data is one of the best ways to communicate complicated information.
The IF Function
If you really want to show that you are confident with Excel, learn about the IF function. This helps you to create a comparison between what you expect and the actual value. This is a great tool for comparing budgets to actual spend, for example.
Beginner vs Intermediate Excel Skills
You may be asking yourself if your current business requirements make learning intermediate Excel skills necessary. There are so many reasons why you should take the next step.
Beginner Excel skills will give you the tools you need to put a basic spreadsheet together. You will be able to search the data that you have and to create clean, comprehensible information. These are valuable skills.
Moving to intermediate will allow you to harness the power of Excel to make software work for you. It is the difference between creating a list of data and creating the kind of graphs and comparisons that show you what that data really means.
Excel has so many different uses, and a beginner tutorial is a good place to start. But if you are a business owner or if you are looking to stand out from the crowd, you should seriously consider learning the intermediate skills.
What To Expect On An Intermediate Excel Skills Test
When you are applying for a job that requires knowledge of Excel, you should expect to be given a Microsoft Excel test. Your employers will be looking to see how capable and comfortable you are with the software.
If you are taking an intermediate Excel skills test, the tasks will be more complex. These tests require you to understand how the more sophisticated actions and formulas in Excel work.
It is worth noting that an intermediate Excel skills test will still cover many of the skills that you will have learned as a beginner. You will be asked some questions on formatting and cell protection, for example.
However, the real test will be showing that you understand macros, that you can put a formula together, and that you can create a graph or table, but it will not be as intensive as an expert level test.
An Intermediate Excel Skills Checklist
There are some key skills that you will need to have mastered if you want to pass an intermediate Excel skills test. While the specifics may vary, here are the most common areas.
- Charts, graphs, and bars
- Pivot tables
- Filtering information to provide quality data
- Creating macros
- Managing data
You will need to organise large quantities of data and present it in a graph or table. You will also need to demonstrate that you understand the more advanced tools that can help you to save time.
Microsoft Excel Digital Skills
At The Excel Experts, we know you’ll love our MS Excel Training Courses!
This is because we uniquely deliver our courses, tailored to each learner. We use our total combined experience of 25 years to make sure that we cater to your needs.
Excel can be a great tool for any professional or business, and with the right set of skills such as learning conditional formatting and data validation, you will find Excel is much easier to use.
Our training course is designed to give you a better understanding of some of the more complex features that Excel has to offer.
Some of the topics that we will be covering include:
Learn how to use pivot tables to your advantage and make data analysis a breeze. Pivot tables are used for organising and summarising huge amounts of data into a clear, easy-to-understand format.
Learn how to write arguments that will make your formulas more dynamic and easier to use. Arguments are used in conjunction with functions to give your formulas more flexibility.
An array formula is a type of formula that allows you to perform multiple calculations with a single entry. Array formulas can be used for a variety of tasks, such as finding the sum of a range or returning multiple pieces of data.
Macros and VBA
Create custom macros to automate tedious tasks and use Visual Basic for Applications to truly take your understanding of Excel to the next level.
These are just a handful of Excel topics you can expect to learn and explore further.
If you want cutting-edge MS Excel training that is tailored specifically to your needs, look no further than The Excel Experts.
Get in touch today!
Conclusion: What Are Considered Intermediate Excel Skills?
It can be difficult to tell what your potential employer will consider intermediate or advanced skills. What you need to remember is that intermediate Excel skills are the skills that help you to really engage with the data.
The intermediate Excel skills you will learn with us will help you to create visual representations of your data, organise information in easy-to-read tables, save time through shortcuts and quick commands, and protect the information on your spreadsheets.
Intermediate Excel knowledge is the step beyond simply inputting data into a spreadsheet. That means knowing how to format properly, use formulas for mathematical equations, and create graphs and tables.
When you learn advanced Excel skills, you will use formulas for more complex actions. For example, you will be able to analyse data and create simulations and projected spending, as well as understanding Visual Basics for Applications.
There are a lot of courses out there for anyone looking to learn intermediate Excel skills, which is why it is so important to find an online tutor that can work with you to achieve your specific targets. Visit The Excel Experts to learn more about the courses we have available!
You should expect to be asked to explain functions of Excel such as VLOOKUP, SUMIF and COUNTIF. You will be asked to explain what a pivot table is and what you would use it for, and to give an example of a macro that you have used in your previous place of work.