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Microsoft’s Excel is the most widely used business software in the world for data management, interpretation and analysis and as a business modeling tool. Excel has valuable uses even if dedicated accounting or other software is used.

However, many users are only familiar with and use a small percentage of Excel’s vast capacity. Learning more about Excel’s functions and how they can be applied to specific individual's or business’s needs can be very valuable asset to both the individual and the business.
It is my aim to provide customized training to meet that need for individuals and businesses in Taranaki. This may be to learn a particular function or formula or to meet a specific workplace need or to provide more general up-skilling in Excel’s capabilities.

For those who want to work towards a formal qualification in Excel: Microsoft’s Excel Specialist qualification is an option or The International Computer Drivers’ Licence has modules in both basic and advanced Excel.

Suggested Training Topics for EXCEL

Training is tailored to clients' needs.

The following are examples of topics that may be of interest to businesses or individuals:

While training can take place at any level: from beginner to advanced the following is a list of some features that will be of value in a business environment. All will be tailored to the specific needs of the client.


Managing worksheets and workbooks: 

Creating workbooks, using templates, protecting the structure and contents, customizing the ribbon, simple macros, copying and linking data between workbooks, importing data from external sources, custom formatting, cell styles and themes.

Conditional formatting: Allows certain cells to be highlighted or “stand out” with colourful or other specific formatting if certain conditions are met.

Advanced formula and functions: 

Excel can perform various logical and look-up functions to help find and interpret and analyse data.Lookup functions include: VLOOKUP, HLOOKUP, MATCH and INDEX.Logical functions include: IF, AND, OR and NOT and can be nested (combined) to form powerful “decision-making” formula.Statistical procedures can be performed by using SUMIFS, AVERAGEIFS and COUNTIFS.


Charts allow data to be displayed in a visual way. They can be dynamic allowing for forecasting and data modelling and they form the basis of Dashboards.


Excel dashboards provide a snapshot or summary of a table of raw data. They provide an excellent way for a business to quickly and easily get an overview of their data. They are dynamic and adjust to show different data depending on what the user selects.


Date and Time functions: 

Dates and times can be used in formula to determine overdue invoices, project scheduling, working hours etc.


What if… analysis and financial functions:

By using GOAL SEEK, and SCENARIOS data can be manipulated to test various hypothesis while the financial functions allow you to calculate loan payments, depreciation etc.

Pivot Tables and Pivot Charts:

Allow for the analysis, summary and visualization of large amounts of data.

Data Model - Power Pivot:

 A new add-in, Power Pivot allows for data modeling for large amounts of data and provides many of the functions of a database programme such as Access: you can establish data models, relationships between tables, and create calculations.

Chart examples

Add fun to your Charts by using pictures in place of normal bars or columns. This Chart shows car sales for the first 9 months of the year and then includes a Linear Trendline to predict sales for Oct, Nov & Dec

This is an example of a simple 
Excel Dashboard which provides a snapshot or summary of a Table of raw data. In this case visitor numbers to NZ provided by Stats NZ. The Dashboard is dynamic in that by selecting one or more of the months on the Slicer, the Charts will adjust to reflect the data for those months. Dashboards provide an excellent way for a business to quickly and easily get an overview of their data.

The following chart I have created compares the number of weeks of maternity leave on full pay in various OECD countries. The Chart is a Mirror Bar Chart which shows two sets of data side by side with a common axis. (Raw data source: OECD). This type of Chart can serve many useful purposes in business and can be included in my course on Charts.

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