If you are entering the Excel in your company, or use it often, but usually fill it manually, we have two magic words that help a lot: automatic calculations.
No matter how common it is to receive, modify, print and send spreadsheets, many are still unaware of how much time they can save by pre-preparing a spreadsheet to perform calculations automatically whenever values are entered.
There is nothing difficult about it; Excel has a large number of functions available that can be used without the slightest knowledge of the syntax of its formulas.
Using Automatic Calculations
There are many ways to automatically Excel. The main ones are:
- From the Formula menu;
- In the context menu that is available when using the right mouse button;
- Choosing the formula to use, as needed.
Enabling Automatic Calculations
Before we can see ways to perform automatic calculations, we need to ensure that the option that allows automatic updating of values is enabled.
In the main menu, Formulas tab, under "Calculation Options". By default, "Automatic" must be enabled. If not, please change.
Calculating through the Formula Menu
The Formula menu is very complete, with several options, from the basic operations to the most complex ones that can be used in Excel.
In the first item, there is the link to insert functions searching for what is needed among all the options present in the system.
In the second item, there are the most commonly used functions for mathematical calculations: Sum, Mean, Count Numbers, Maximum and Minimum.
They respectively do the following calculations on the selected range:
- Result of sum of values;
- Arithmetic mean between values;
- Count how many cells have numbers;
- They show the highest value within the range;
- They show the smallest value within the range.
To use them, select the interval beforehand, and then choose the desired formula.
The result will be shown automatically in the formula following the interval.
Calculating using the Context Menu
The context menu appears when you right-click on one or more cells. Among the various options we have in it is "Quick Review".
"Quick Scan" gives you access to the most commonly used Excel options: Conditional Formatting, Graphs, Totals, Tables, and Sparklines.
At this point, we will deal with the options in the tab "Totals", because there are the most frequently used formulas.
The operation is similar to the Formula menu: When you choose the option that fits the need of the moment, Excel automatically calculates the result and displays it in a cell after the selected interval.
Choosing the formula directly
Finally, one can choose the specific formula for the case and, through this method, the cells to which the calculation will be applied need not be previously selected.
The desired formula can be inserted directly into the cell, provided its syntax is known.
If there is not enough security to enter the entire formula, you can click on the "fx" icon:
You will choose the function to be inserted and clicking on "OK", a dialog box will open to fill the contents of the formula, designating which information is required in each field.
The Benefits of Using Automatic Calculations
Imagine having to redo an entire worksheet whenever you need to calculate your company's DRE? Or when you make a sales chart or commission calculation, having to start it from scratch by manually filling in all the values and results? Very laborious and an immense waste of time.
The best way to work with Excel is to develop or acquire ready-made templates, in which you only change the input values and allow the system to give the results up-to-date.
Still, as long as your formulas and input data are correct, you are guaranteed that the results are valid, after all minimized the possibilities of fill-in and calculation errors.
As you can see, creating spreadsheets that perform automatic calculations in Excel is essential to using the potential of this tool and making your company's data control more professional and organized.
If you want to learn more about various features of this tool, know our Excel online courses platform. If you want to manage your business better, adopt our spreadsheet and follow the road to success.