Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Worksheets and Workbooks
Usually, you’ll use Home ➝ Cells ➝ Delete to remove entire rows or columns. However,
you can also use it just to remove specific cells in a column or row. In this case, Excel
prompts you with a dialog box asking whether you want to fill in the gap by
moving cells in the current column up or by moving cells in the current row to the left.
This feature is the reverse of the Insert Copied Cells feature, and you’ll need to take
special care to make sure you don’t scramble the structure of your spreadsheet when
you use this approach.
Worksheets and Workbooks
So far you’ve learned how to create a basic worksheet with a table of data. That’s great
for getting started, but as power users, professional accountants, and other Excel
jockeys quickly learn, some of the most compelling reasons to use Excel involve
multiple tables that share information and interact with each other.
For example, say you want to track the performance of your company: you create
one table summarizing your firm’s yearly sales, another listing expenses, and a third
analyzing profitability and making predictions for the coming year. If you create
these tables in different spreadsheet files, you must copy shared information from
one location to another, all without misplacing a number or making a mistake. And
what’s worse, with data scattered in multiple places, you’re missing the chance to use
some of Excel’s niftiest charting and analytical tools. But cramming a bunch of tables
onto the same worksheet page isn’t the solution. Not only are you likely to lose your
spot in the avalanche of data, you’ll also face a host of formatting and cell
Fortunately, a better solution exists. Excel lets you create spreadsheets with
multiple pages of data, each of which can conveniently exchange information with other
pages. Each page is called a worksheet, and a collection of one or more worksheets is
called a workbook (which is also sometimes called a spreadsheet file ).
In the following pages, you’ll learn how to manage the worksheets in a workbook.
Many workbooks contain more than one table of information. For example, you
might have a list of your bank account balances and a list of items repossessed from
your home in the same financial planning spreadsheet. You might find it a bit
challenging to arrange these different tables. You could stack them (Figure 15-13) or
place them side by side (Figure 15-14), but neither solution is perfect.
Most Excel masters agree that the best way to arrange different tables of information
is to use separate worksheets for each table. When you create a new workbook, Excel
automatically fills it with three blank worksheets named Sheet1, Sheet2, and Sheet3.
Often, you’ll work exclusively with the first worksheet (Sheet1), and not even realize
that you have two more blank worksheets to play with—not to mention the ability
to add plenty more.