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Excel top tip: Pivot Tables

Excel top tip: Pivot Tables

Pivot tables allow you to quickly analyse and detail large amounts of lists and tables without the need for hundreds of formulas and redoing the sheet every time you want to make a change to the summary or have a new one.

Summarising large amounts of data allows you to create informative reports and identify trends in that data against specific criteria, using pivot tables to achieve this for you can save hours of time.

Select the range of cells you need to work with then select insertàpivot table.

If you envisage this data having additional rows added later then you could run the pivot table wizard as above and choose an entire data list to work with by specifying the external source.

Now you can select the data you want to create the summary of by ticking the fields you need. Below shows the amount spent by male and females for example – or you could have

To make pivot tables work for you, you must ensure you have at least one column that has duplicate data that can be summarised. For example above the columns “Gender” and “shop” appears in multiple rows so data can be summarised against the shop name. Without duplicate cell content you wouldn’t be able to summarise with or without pivot tables.

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