Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Using PivotTables
Using PivotTables
The more data you have, the more a PivotTable report can help you make sense of that
data. PivotTables allow you to quickly filter, summarize, and group data just by dragging
fields around on the screen and picking from lists. One of the most interesting options
allows you to move rows to columns (and vice versa); this capability, formally known as
pivoting , is what gives the feature its name.
In this section, we explain how to create a PivotTable, how to customize its layout, and how
to create compelling and visually attractive reports.
Creating a PivotTable
Every PivotTable starts with a data source. Although that source can be external, the most
common scenario (and the one we cover in this topic) uses source data stored in a range
or table on an Excel worksheet. The source data must be organized in columns, each
containing a separate data point, with no summaries. The order of rows and columns doesn’t
matter. Headings aren’t required either, although we strongly recommend using descriptive
headings—trying to create a PivotTable using generic headings (Column1, Column2, and so
on) is a painful process.
To begin, click a single cell in the source data range or table (or select the entire range) and
then click PivotTable in the Tables group on the Insert tab. That opens the Create PivotTable
dialog box shown in Figure 12-10.
Figure 12-10 The default options shown here position your PivotTable on a new worksheet
within the same workbook.
The first pair of options allows you to change the data source if necessary. The options at
the bottom of the dialog box allow you to select a specific location for the PivotTable. For
most circumstances, we recommend choosing the default options. Keeping a PivotTable
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