All you need to know about Microsoft Excel

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By Inversa Technosoft

What is Microsoft Excel?

Excel is a spreadsheet program. It is an electronic document, a giant grid of columns and rows, where data can be stored, summarised, analyzed and reported. Thus it functions as a database tool, a data analysis tool and a data reporting tool.

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“I am working as a Report Analyst in a MNC Company and the only tool I use for work in Microsoft Excel. I am cleaning data, making graphs, creating complicated dashboards using micros and its fun”

What is the use and role of Excel?

In businesses, Excel is used to track various metrics, like sales and expenses. It is also used for maintaining large lists of data, like customer database, which can go for a few thousand rows. It can be used to track employees, to maintain list of inventory (stock of raw materials), and other similar purposes.
Excel has a rich set of data management tools. With these tools, data can be sorted, filtered, re-formatted and re-presented in multiple ways. Charts can be created, which give a visual presentation of data, which is much easier to understand, rather than showing data in columns and rows.
Excel also has a feature called pivot. This is a dynamic table, which takes rows upon rows of data, and summarizes them into meaningful reports, as tables and charts. It is widely used to slice and dice data, so that multiple views can be created of the dataset. These views help business managers to analyze data effectively, and take accurate decisions.

What is the use and role of Excel in Data Science?

Statistical operations are the basis for decision making in the field of data science / data analytics. Excel provides an extensive range of statistical functions, that perform calculations from basic mean, median & mode, to the more complex statistical distribution and probability tests.

Excel is used to create income projections, budgets, compare the actuals with budgets, and perform variance analysis to identify reasons for under performance. It is also used to predict what is going to happen in a few years from now, with reference to revenue, cost of goods and business expenses.

Built into Excel is a rich set of functions, which is very useful for data science. There are functions for financial analysis, mathematical and statistical analysis, that is used extensively in descriptive analytics, predictive analytics and prescriptive analytics.