Blog post on how to get started today with Excel tables is brought to you by Judi Hurlock, who writes Excel online training for Office.com.
OK, you've got data arranged in spreadsheet rows and columns, with column headers. Why try tables?
Well, tables that make it easy to format the data, sort, filter, add totals and formulas. With tables, you don't have to clamor to get formatting right. Excel automatically adds the table formatting that distinguishes it from all other data in the spreadsheet. And if you don't like the formatting that you see at first, Excel has many table formats to choose from.
Tables are automatically with drop-down arrows at the top of each column that you can use to sort and filter.
A single mouse click displays a totals row at the bottom of the table. Then click on a cell in the total row to get a list of functions to be used: sum, average, Min, Max, and so on.
And wait until you see the way Excel handles formulas across the top of a table column: write the formula, and then Excel fills the formula all the way down the column for you.
If you decide that you do not want a table, you can convert it into a range of data. Click anywhere on the table. Then, Design tab, in the Tools group, click convert to range and Yes then select. To get rid of the formatting, Home tab, in the styles table group, click cell styles and normal then select.
Go, familiarise with tables. Just put the insertion point inside the spreadsheet data and then Enter tab, in the tables group, click the tables on. For more information about tables, take the training to use Excel tables to manage information. And let us know what you think after you give a try to Excel tables.