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Microsoft Excel

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

sharyn bainesLearn how to change your Pivot Table back to the classic display of version 2003 and earlier.

If you were familiar with Pivot tables in Excel versions prior to Excel 2007 you will be very used to the classic display of 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

sharyn bainesI 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 GST 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.

 

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Excel – Using VLOOKUP to compare two lists

sharyn bainesYears 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

Do your documents reflect well on your organisation?

Most of us have used a template in the past to create a presentation or start a document, and many of us are guilty of reusing the last great version of a document as a starting point instead of locating and using a template.  This pragmatic approach helps to avoid wheel reinvention and utilises the efforts of the clever person who created the file in the first place – however, the problem with reusing a last good version versus using a template is that your new file takes on any issues that existed in the original doc, and you could very likely be using out of date branding, terminology and styles.

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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

sharyn bainesWhen 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?

sharyn bainesI 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

Excel – 5 Paste tips that will save you HEAPS of time

sharyn bainesEver wondered what the most used command is in Excel?

I have. In fact a few years back I searched for the answer on Google.  I had thought that the answer would surely be ‘Undo’, especially when I think about how often I use the fabulous Ctrl + Z key combination. Amazingly I found a page (which sadly I’m unable to find now) that claimed that Undo wasn’t the most used…it was Paste, Ctrl + V. Read more