Excel formulas are not just for numbers

 Dec 16, 2014

I had a student recently say that she "didn't need to know formulas in Excel" as she "didn't work with financial spreadsheets." Formulas, however, do a lot more than work out a company’s balance sheet. There are formulas for many different purposes, so no matter what you use Excel for – there’s a formula for you. There are around 350 worksheet functions in Excel. Functions are basically built-in formulas. The most commonly known function is SUM which is designed to simply add up numbers. The other 349 do a multitude of different types of task. These can involve numbers, text, dates and/or times, and sometimes a combination of all three. Text Functions Below are some of the many text-related functions. These can be useful for cleaning up imported or incorrectly keyed-in data. Case Functions – UPPER, LOWER, PROPER These three functions convert text to a different case, so if names are in lower case, they can be converted to proper (title) case. Cleaning Functions – CLEAN, TRIM CLEAN removes non-printing characters and TRIM removes excess spaces. Find and Replace Functions – FIND, LEFT, RIGHT, MID, REPLACE, SEARCH, SUBSTITUTE These functions either locate the position of a character or replace part of a text string. Number to Text Conversion Functions – CODE, DOLLAR, NUMBERVALUE, VALUE These functions convert text into numbers and similar actions. To find out more about these types of functions as well as many others, take a look at New Horizons' Excel 2010 Level 4 training program.

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About the Author:

Ben Kirk  

With over 16 years of experience working as a Desktop Applications specialist for a number of large education services providers, Ben is one of New Horizons most skilled and dynamic instructors. With his Advanced Diploma of Business Skills alongside his practical experience and expertise, Ben is able to provide insight and guidance to students at all skill levels across the entire Microsoft Office suite.

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