Author: Sharyn Baines

Excel – How do I change my Pivot Table back to the classic (version 2003 and earlier) display?

If you were familiar with Pivot tables in Excel versions prior to Excel 2007 you will be very used to working with the blue lines of the Pivot Table and the ability to drag and drop data right on to the Pivot Table.

In Excel 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016 Pivot Tables are now quite different. The blue lines are gone, along with the wonderful drag-and-drop feature. Read more

How to calculate GST at 15% using Excel formulas

I have been asked twice in one week how to write Excel formulas to calculate GST at the rate of 15%.

You can find information on how to calculate the rate on the NZ Inland Revenue website. I’ve taken this a step further and put together a tutorial on how to put these calculations into Excel formulas. Read more

Excel – Using VLOOKUP to compare two lists

Years ago the Training and Development manager of a large organisation invited me to spend some time in their Accounts department in order to observe how the Accounts team dealt with their day-to-day tasks. My job was to report on any process that could be improved using Microsoft® Excel.

I’ll always remember asking one of the team (a “just-out-of-school” new recruit) what he was working on after I’d observed him sitting with a red biro and a ruler, diligently drawing red lines on 2 separate sheets of paper. It turned out he was trying to reconcile a customer’s account. Read more

PowerPoint – add additional text, formatting and your logo to audience handouts

Audience hand-outs can easily be printed directly from PowerPoint simply by navigating to the File tab and then to Print. From the Settings options you can change from printing “Full Page Slides” to Handouts. From the Handouts gallery you can choose the layout required.

To add the date, page numbering and additional text click the Edit Header & Footer link at the very bottom of the ‘Print Settings’ panel. This option is great if you want to include small bits of text on all hand-out pages and don’t need to include a cover page, additional paragraphs of info or even your company logo. Read more

Prepare your business for Office 365

If you’re planning to move to Office 365, here are some things to consider that’ll help you prepare your business for life in the cloud. Read more

Don’t be fooled – protecting isn’t bullet-proof

When I’m asked to teach a class on how to restrict editing within a document, the first 5 minutes of my instruction is usually spent explaining that protecting isn’t bullet-proof.

Why do I do this?  Because I have met so many people who assume that restricting the editing of a document by adding a password is in fact securing it so that only the holder or holders of the password can access the file.  Not true!  Via the Internet you can easily access a multitude of work-arounds that coach you through how to easily access the content of a restricted file. Read more

Are you endangering the privacy of your clients and team members?

I once paid a lawyer to draft a legal agreement for my business.  The document was fabulous and given to me as a Microsoft® Word file so that I could easily add additional information each time I used the document.  When I received the file I noticed that the document’s metadata (hidden properties) held the name of another law firm, not the law firm that this document had been sent from.  Not a good look at all.

How did this happen?  Simple.  My document was a copy of a document from another law firm.  When the copy was made, possibly using File, Save As, the document’s metadata was carried over into my file.  The lawyer may not have been aware that Word files store metadata, information that can reveal details of the author and organisation from which it originated.  Even though my lawyer had indeed drafted the document, the original template of the file had been created at another law firm.  So even though it was his work, it looked as though it had originated elsewhere. Read more