Monday, September 16, 2013

Monday Night Nerd - Using Excel Filters

I am a bit of a nerd at heart.  It's my dad's fault from my first VIC-20 and Commodore-64 I loved technology. And a well written spreadsheet makes my heart sing!  I use them for everything, just ask my kids.  I was a past president for a few school athletic clubs (2 at one point in time) and by having my spreadsheets organized, my job was all that much easier.  I want to share a tip using filters, hopefully if this is new to you, you might feel a little pitter-patter next time you open Excel....

I built a quick gift list for my four kids.  I included sizes of a few common items that I keep up to date, and made up a few other items to build the sheet for this purpose.  It's relatively small and on one page for example sake.  but picture this as my master holiday list, all family members included & 4 children's wish lists -oh! how many rows I need each year, the chaos can be overwhelming. Let's introduce Filters.

To enable your filter, highlight your "header" row. Click on your "Sort & Filter" button and then click on  "Filter" (highlighted below with arrows). (or use quick key shortcut CTRL+SHIFT+U) when your filters are on, you will notice the drop down arrows on your header row titles.

Below is a list of what you get when you click on those drop down arrows.  As long as you have all of your column titles being filtered, you can manipulate what you see w/o messing up the integrity of your data in your rows. (I didnt mention the text filter, I will save that for another Monday)

Now, let's say I was headed to Dick's Sporting Goods.  I filtered by the location column, and then sort A-Z on the item column. So as I head through each department I can quickly see what I want to buy, and all the other rows of data are no longer distracting me.

easy-peasy right?    Organize groups of people, filter by grade, team, birthday months, etc.... The possibilities are endless.

If you have any questions using filters, feel free to email me :) Check back next week for another Monday Night Nerd post.

No comments:

Post a Comment