Monday, May 21, 2012

Excel and you: Color coding’s for the birds!

Last week we discussed embedded if/then statements.  Those can pop out different numbers for a variety of situations.  But what happens if you want to find a specific number easily, or a range of values?

 Well, conditional formatting is for you!

To start off, we won’t even use numbers.  Say you have a list imported from another source, say a staff or client list.  Now, you want to verify that each person is only on there once, you could sort by name, and then manually search through the list, but what if you miss one?

Well, that’s where conditional formatting comes in.  Highlight the column you would like to check for, and go to the conditional formatting->highlight cell rules->duplicate values.  And viola!  Each cell that has a match will be highlighted, and super easy to see!

You can even sort the list by color then, and pull all the duplicates to the top for easy removal!

Now, if you wanted to highlight only a specific value, or range of values, say anything under 0, go to conditional formatting->highlight cell rules->less than, and choose your preferred method of highlighting.  It’s that easy!

Conditional formatting can be found in the home tab of the office ribbon!

There are literally tons of uses for conditional formatting, let me know what you use it for in the comments!

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