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Microsoft Excel

Make data work harder for your business

Microsoft Excel is the spreadsheet creation and analysis tool that gives professionals the tools they need to manage critical business data and everyday users the power to get the most out of their information. Excel gives you the tools to easily access, process, analyse, share and display the information you need to run your business.

Creating and working with a spreadsheet can be a daunting task, especially if you're a new user. Excel makes creating spreadsheets a simple process, regardless of your level of experience.

For new users, basic features have been brought to the fore to allow you to quickly and easily set up a spreadsheet and perform calculations. For advanced users, the more complex tools are made more readily accessible and intuitive.

Productivity and collaboration innovations like Smart Tags and Task Panes introduced with Office XP help bring much of the functionality of Excel to the fore, making it easy to find the tools you use most.

Context-sensitive Smart Tags, for example, speed up access to relevant features, like formatting options for pasted information, while the Clipboard Task Pane for one allows you to cut and paste up to 24 items at a time - an undeniable productivity booster if you're used to jumping backwards and forwards between documents.

The latest versions of Excel have put special emphasis on stability and reliability, helping to make sure that you spend less time worrying about your software. With the Application and Document Recovery features, it needn't be the end of the world if an error occurs. You work is automatically saved and the application is safely shut down - so you needn't concern yourself with recreating work.

Excel comes with enhanced intelligence to help assure you that you aren't making mistakes. The application instantly exposes potential errors that may affect the accuracy of your work.

The Error Checking Smart Tag alerts you of possible errors in a cell, and offers you the options of resolving the error, ignoring it or accessing further options.

Excel comes with a library of hundreds of predefined functions, easily accessible via the Function Wizard, and when you type a function in a cell you're presented with a handy screen tip and quick and easy access to the function's Help menu entry.

You can also easily evaluate the calculations that make up your formula with the Formula Evaluator, which allows you to follow how Excel has calculated a result.

With Excel you can easily keep vital data up to date with the refreshable Web Queries feature. This feature lets you bring data into Excel from the web and then choose to either manually refresh the data as the need arises, or have Excel do so automatically.

Creating a refreshable web query can be as simple as cutting and pasting Web content into your Excel spreadsheet and allowing the smart tag that appears to create the query.

Excel makes it easy to share data with others and provides tools to help you easily collaborate on spreadsheets with colleagues. You can select to send a whole workbook or merely a portion thereof, like a range of data, a chart or a PivotTable.

And as your spreadsheet may contain confidential information, Excel offers password protection letting you protect your spreadsheet or even specific ranges within a sheet.

When you send a document around for review, the appropriate tools are automatically made available to reviewers and once the document has been returned you are offered the option to merge the changes back into your original.

With Auto Republish, you can automatically save your Excel data to the Web each time you save your file.

Excel 2002 and beyond makes it easy to publish your spreadsheet to your SharePoint website straight from your File Open / File Save dialogue box, so your colleagues need only consult your SharePoint Document Library to access the latest data relevant to your business.

Get more information from the Microsoft Excel home page.

What next?

The best way to see if Excel 2003 is right for your business is to give it a go. You can order a 60-day trial of Microsoft Office Small Business Edition 2003, which includes Excel.

You can also get more information about the other Office System programs.

Sign into Microsoft Small Business+ for free web-based training and software support.

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