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Four advantages of using Excel pivot tables to prepare your monthly reports

by , 24 February 2014
Still not using Excel pivot tables to prepare your monthly reports? If so, here are four goods reasons why you must change your ways.

The pivot tables tool is one of the most powerful yet intimidating features in Excel, says O'Reilly.

Don't let the pivot tables intimidate you. Use them when preparing your monthly reports.

Here are the four benefits of using pivot tables to prepare your monthly reports:

#1: 'It's a breeze to change the layout of your report,' says the Practical Accountancy Loose Leaf. You simply drag and drop fields where you want them on your pivot table.

#2: If you set your pivot table up properly, these will remain up to date.

When you're starting out with pivot tables, it'll help you understand the data better if you apply formatting to the relevant fields like dates and amounts. As you progress you'll no longer need to format source data.

#3: Once set-up, your pivot tables will save you enormous amounts of time, as you only need to set the template up once.

#4: You can report on LOTS of information with pivot tables.

According to O'Reilly, by using a pivot table, you can calculate summary information without writing a single formula or copying a single cell.

The site goes on to say that the most notable feature of pivot tables is that you can arrange them dynamically.

For example, 'say you create a pivot table summary using raw census data. With the drag of a mouse, you can easily rearrange the pivot table so that it summarises the data based on gender or age groupings or geographic location. This process of rearranging your table is known as pivoting your data: you're turning the same information around to examine it from different angles.'

Now that you know the benefits of using Excel pivot tables, use them to prepare your monthly reports.

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