Cross platform: learn to use Microsoft Excel properly


Microsoft Excel is a core office tool; it is invaluable for planning, analysing data and managing budgets.  A depressingly large number of people don’t seem to have a clue how to use it.

Jean, is this your own personal bugbear?

Yes. Yes it is.  But it’s a reasonable one!  It’s a crucial tool that anyone using a computer in any job should be able to use.  For some reason, loads of people in charities can’t use it properly. Things I’ve witnessed: 

  • someone taking out a calculator and using it to manually add up columns of numbers and then typing in the total instead of using the SUM function
  • a quite senior person receiving a carefully worked up spreadsheet with a complex budget and responding “oh can you do this in Word instead, that’s how I always do it?” 
  • someone filling out loads of columns with analytics data and not putting any headers on any of them. When I asked them what the data represented, they couldn’t remember.

Sorry, be right back, I have to go scream into a pillow.  

If you don’t know how to use Excel properly: quick! Do an online course before you’re found out. 


Do online tutorials. Hubspot have a great roundup of 21 free and paid learning resources for Excel.