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Microsoft Excel: Getting Started With Pivot Tables

Pivot tables are a great way to organize and analyze data with ease. Using this Microsoft Excel feature will help you have a better understanding of your company’s statistics. In this video, we will discuss how you can get started with pivot tables so that you can start saving time and hassle.

Understanding Pivot Tables

Pivot tables make keeping track of your business easier through data analysis. You can examine differences, similarities, highs, and lows in your datasets. Before you begin using pivot tables, here are some things you should be aware of. The data the pivot table is based on is referred to as “source data”. The four different areas of a pivot table are row labels, values, column labels, and the report filter. Finally, each column in a pivot table represents a different category of data, making your statistics more organized.

How To Prep Your Data

Data should always be prepared for use before being put into a pivot table. This means organizing it into columns and rows, with no blank areas except for cells. Put similar data in the same columns to group it. Formatting column headings differently than your data helps the system tell it apart. This can be done by bolding or centering the column heading. You should also separate unnecessary information from the data by creating a data island.

How To Create A Pivot Table

To create a pivot table, go to “insert”, either “recommended pivot tables” or “pivot table”, confirm the range you are using, hit “new worksheet” and then “ok”. To build your pivot table further, go to “pivot table fields” and choose the fields to include. Hover over a cell, right-click, select “number format”, and choose a category to select which values are shown. You can also change how data is represented in this area.

More Helpful Tips

When a pivot table is open, the tabs “pivot table analyze” and “design” will be shown. You can refresh your data under “pivot table analyze”. Refreshing is not an automatic function, so make sure to do it often. To refresh, go to “pivot table analyze” and select “refresh” or use the shortcut Alt + F5. If you are working with multiple tables, use “refresh all”. Go to “change data source” if you need to update the range. To create a new table out of a specific value, double-click on the value you would like to use and a new table will appear.

Excel automatically creates groups when multiple values are present in a pivot table. Next to each group, there will be the “-” option. This button will collapse the details of the group, hiding them from view. This can also be done by pressing “collapse field” in the ribbon. Use the “design” area to change the appearance of the pivot table and how totals are displayed.

Use the column or row dropdown to filter through a pivot table. Once you are in the dropdown, select the categories you would like to see, and all others will be removed. You can also filter by right-clicking on a value and choosing what to include. Values that were not included in the table can still be used to filter.

How Will Using Pivot Tables Help You?

Pivot tables are a convenient tool for being more organized and having easier analysis when working with statistics for your business. If you would like to learn more about pivot tables or Microsoft Excel in general, feel free to reach out to us. At On Time Tech, we want to make sure you have the technology you need to succeed. Contact us online or by phone today.

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