Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Formatting Cell Text
Formatting Cell Text
Tom has already entered the data and some formulas in a workbook, which is only
a rough draft of what he wants to submit to the company. The Documentation sheet
describes the workbook’s purpose and content. The Yearly Sales sheet displays the sales
history of the X310 heart rate monitor including the total number of units sold per sales
region (labeled R01 through R08) and the total revenue generated by those sales in the
past two years. The Monthly Sales sheet also reports the number of X310 units sold by
region and month. In its current form, the data is diffi cult to read and interpret. Tom
wants you to format the workbook contents to improve its readability and visual appeal.
You’ll open the workbook and review its content.
To open the workbook:
1. Open the ExerComp workbook located in the Excel2\Tutorial folder included
with your Data Files, and then save the workbook as ExerComp Sales Report .
2. In the Documentation sheet, enter your name in cell B4 and the date in cell B5.
3. Review the contents of the three worksheets.
Formatting is the process of changing a workbook’s appearance by defi ning the
fonts, styles, colors, and decorative features. Formatting changes only the appearance
of data—it does not affect the data itself. Excel organizes its formatting tools in terms
of themes. A theme is a collection of formats for text, colors, images, and graphical
effects applied throughout a workbook. Each theme has a name. The Offi ce theme is
the default, although you can apply other themes or create your own. You can also use
fonts and colors that are not part of the current theme. As you format a workbook, Live
Preview shows the effects of the formats on the workbook’s appearance.
Written Communication: Formatting Workbooks for Readability and Appeal
Designing a workbook requires the same care as designing any written document or report.
A well-formatted workbook is easier to read and establishes a sense of professionalism with
readers. Do the following to improve the appearance of your workbooks:
• Clearly identify each worksheet’s purpose with column or row titles and a descriptive
sheet name.
• Don’t crowd individual worksheets with too much information. Each worksheet should deal
with only one or two topics. Place extra topics on separate sheets. Readers should be able
to interpret each worksheet with a minimal amount of horizontal and vertical scrolling.
• Place worksheets containing the most important information first in the workbook.
Position worksheets summarizing your findings near the front of the workbook. Position
worksheets with detailed and involved analysis near the end as an appendix.
• Use consistent formatting throughout the workbook. If negative values appear in red on
one worksheet, format them in the same way on all sheets. Also, be consistent in the use
of thousands separators, decimal places, and percentages.
• Pay attention to the format of the printed workbook. Make sure your printouts are legible
with informative headers and footers. Check that the content of the printout is scaled
correctly to the page size and that page breaks divide the information into logical sections.
Excel provides many formatting tools. However, too much formatting can be intrusive,
overwhelm data, and make the document difficult to read. Always remember, the goal of
formatting is not simply to make a “pretty workbook,” but also to accentuate important
trends and relationships in the data. A well-formatted workbook should seamlessly convey
your data to the reader. If the reader is thinking about how your workbook looks, it means
he or she is not thinking about your data.
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