02 September 2013

Use Excel Like A Washing Machine

Excel iconDo you know that you can use Excel in the same way as you use the washing machine? Instead of washing one towel at a time you put all towels of similar material and color in the machine and wash them together. And in Excel you can manipulate cells with the same coordinates in multiple worksheets at the same time.

It is called 3D, and in a new demo in the Tips section I explain how to use 3D formulas.

Avoid tedious repetition
When you have an Excel workbook with several sheets with similar content, it is very convenient to use 3D formulas to make changes and calculations in all the worksheets at the same time. It saves time and makes calculations much more interesting.

Company budget
In the tutorial I show how to calculate a budget for a company with four departments. First I want to have sums for each department, and instead of adding auto-sums to each department i select all four tabs in the workbook and calculate them all at the same time.

The second step is to summarize the department budgets into a budget for the whole company, and that is quickly done with a formula that stretches over several tabs in the workbook.

Excel is a great invention, but so is the washing machine. Watch the Swedish statistician Hans Rosling explain why at

By Peter Kalmstrom
CEO and Systems Designer Business Solutions

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