The Importance

of Improving Your Excel Skills

 The Importance of Improving Your Excel Skills Most accountants and other financial professionals are familiar with using Microsoft Excel, and other electronic spreadsheet programs, to record and calculate data. Excel proficiency, however, can vary widely from person to person. To get the most out of this useful business tool, accountants and other financial professionals should consider adding webinars and courses that focus on Excel training to their continuing professional education plans.

Even if you’ve been using Microsoft Excel regularly for many years, if you haven’t been intentional about learning new features or expanding your practical knowledge, it’s easy to underuse this powerful spreadsheet software. This can unknowingly cost you both time and money. Below are three benefits of additional Excel training that can improve your spreadsheet skills and proficiency.

1. Learn (or remember) helpful shortcuts, formulas, and other capabilities

You likely already know some shortcuts such as copy and paste or drag to fill, as well as commonly used formulas such as SUM and AVERAGE, but Excel’s capabilities extend well beyond these basic functions. Learning (or being reminded of) Excel’s many shortcuts, formulas, and functions can save you time and decrease the possibility of errors by reducing repetitive tasks and automating calculations. Microsoft Excel can create reports, analyze and compare complex data, and provide accessible information in ways you might not currently be aware of. Continuing your Excel education can help you confidently and capably make the most out of your data.

2. Discover new features and enhancements added in recent versions

Microsoft regularly releases new features and enhancements both to its Microsoft 365 subscription service and to its one-time-purchase annual software versions. If you haven’t made the effort to learn about the updated capabilities of each version, you might unknowingly be wasting time, limiting your productivity, or underusing Excel’s capabilities. Intentionally incorporating Excel training into your continuing education each year can help you learn about and make the most of these new features as they arise.

3. Understand how to troubleshoot errors and solve problems

Frequent spreadsheet users will likely be familiar with receiving error messages or other problems when working with their data. Having to spend time troubleshooting problems through trial and error or waiting on assistance from someone else can cause costly and frustrating delays to your business. Excel training can help you identify common errors and learn ways to quickly find solutions, enabling you to get back on task faster and allowing you to work more efficiently.

When you are ready to make Excel training a part of your continuing professional education, Illumeo’s user-friendly platform makes it easy to find applicable trainings and track your completed credits. Whether you are an Excel novice, or a seasoned user looking to enhance your skills, Illumeo offers both live webinars and self-guided courses that will help you expand your spreadsheet skills and improve your confidence in using this powerful business tool.