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Using formulas to link worksheets and workbooks

From: Excel 2013 Essential Training

Video: Using formulas to link worksheets and workbooks

Sometimes you need to write a formula that gets data from different sheets within the same workbook. At other times, you might need to write a formula that gets data from another workbook. In this movie, we need to have two files open, one of them, 09-04-RegionalSales, the other one, 09-04-EmployeeTable. Let's go to the RegionalSales file first. There's a sheet called RegionalTotals and we want to get Retail Totals there in cell B2. Each of the four sheets preceding this, East, Mid West, South and Pacific, all have a Retail Total in F4 and then below that a Wholesale Total and an Internet Total.

Using formulas to link worksheets and workbooks

Sometimes you need to write a formula that gets data from different sheets within the same workbook. At other times, you might need to write a formula that gets data from another workbook. In this movie, we need to have two files open, one of them, 09-04-RegionalSales, the other one, 09-04-EmployeeTable. Let's go to the RegionalSales file first. There's a sheet called RegionalTotals and we want to get Retail Totals there in cell B2. Each of the four sheets preceding this, East, Mid West, South and Pacific, all have a Retail Total in F4 and then below that a Wholesale Total and an Internet Total.

So let's start where we want to put the formula, that's Regional Totals, in cell B2 and when you write formulas that get data from different worksheets or even different workbooks, by all means, Click the various locations using the mouse or the trackpad rather than typing in file names and sheet names. We begin with equal sign here. We'll Click the East sheet and then Click the cell that has the total we want, that's F4. So the formula starts to build and you can see it in the Formula Bar. We'll put in a plus then go to the Midwest sheet.

Click that same location and then a plus, same thing with the South and so on here. And then Pacific and finally Click that F4 location and then Enter. And we've got our total and as I Double-Click here to see this more easily, we can see what's happened. Recognize how and it's certainly not intuitive that sheet names are followed by exclamation points. Now something else could happen too and it's not bad, but just be aware of it because it does make formulas look different sometimes. If the sheet name has a space in it, now none of these do, but I'm going to change the name of Pacific to Pacific Rim.

So I'll Double-Click the sheet tab, Click right after the C at the end there, add a space and put in Rim. So I've changed the name of that sheet. How does our formula look now? RegionalTotals, Double-Click. Because there is a space, we also see single quotes so Excel does accommodate that and it certainly is okay to have spaces, but in certain kinds of formulas, you can imagine how this clutters up the formula and makes it look a little bit more crowded. So I'm not saying it's wrong, but just do be aware of that. It's another strong recommendation as to why we should not be typing sheet names.

If you simply Click the sheet name as you're writing the formula, Excel pops it right into place properly. So I'll make another change here, I'll simply go back to the Pacific Rim. I'll Double-Click and Click out there and change the name back to Pacific, Enter. And then our formula, of course, has been readjusted. In this example too, since each of the sheets has Wholesale and Internet right under this, I can simply Double-Click or copy this downward and we've got our totals for Wholesale and our totals for Internet as well. So we've written formulas that gather data from different sheets of the same workbook.

Now let's imagine that in the other workbook, I'll press Ctrl+Tab to get there, there's a sheet tab called Furniture Sales and in cell J8, we want to get the Couches Total from the other file, the East sheet, the West sheet and so on. So we're going to see a similar formula, but it's going to be a little bit different and the way we get there is going to be a little bit different as well. Keep in mind, the other files, I press Ctrl+Tab, on the East sheet, Midwest, South and Pacific sheets, all have a total for, for example, Couches in cell B8, there it is right there, same thing with Midwest, South and Pacific.

So, as we jump back into the other file, Ctrl+Tab again, it's the fast way to get there and here too we will not be typing much. We certainly will begin with the equal sign and now what do we need? We need to get our East total and you can get to the other workbook by way of Ctrl+Tab or we can go to the View menu, choose Switch Windows, go to Regional Sales and then on the East tab, Click B8, put in a plus. Now, as you watch the formula being built in the Formula Bar, you see that the file name is referred to as well.

So after putting that and we then need to go to the Midwest sheet. Click on that same cell, a plus and then the South sheet, Click B8 again and a plus and Pacific sheet and Click B8 and we're all done. Let me scroll to the right here a bit so we can see this even better and I'll even zoom in too so that we can see what's happened here. The formula certainly is not something you would have typed as I Double-Click it. So what are we seeing here? We are seeing the name of the file in brackets and then the sheet name and then the location of the cell.

This happens four times here since we're gathering data from four separate sheets. So the formulas certainly look a lot more complicated and involved, but it really isn't. In this case, it's really gathering data from four cells and there's our total right there. Now this is going to look quite a bit different though if we close the other file. If you are writing formulas that get data from other workbooks, you definitely want to have the other file open at least as you're creating the formula, but what happens if we go to the other workbook? I'll press Ctrl+Tab again and close and save this workbook.

So I'll choose File>Close or possibly just press CTRL+W, either way. File>Close and do I want to save this? Yes, I do. We've saved it. Now look at this formula as I Double-Click, because the other file is closed, we need to know -- have a reference as to where it is. It's on the C Drive, within a folder called Users, within a folder with my name, Desktop>Exercise Files and of course, this will look different in your environment if you've saved it in a different location, but all this that I'm highlighting right here represents the content of one cell and then we see this being repeated for the three other cells.

So, the formulas look incredibly complex and involved, but they're really not when you think about it. So we've got a formula that's gathering data from different sheets in a completely different workbook and as we saw earlier, we can also write formulas that gather data from different sheets of the same workbook.

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This video is part of

Image for Excel 2013 Essential Training
Excel 2013 Essential Training

82 video lessons · 74184 viewers

Dennis Taylor
Author

 
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  1. 1m 6s
    1. Welcome
      43s
    2. Using the exercise files
      23s
  2. 29m 37s
    1. What is Excel used for?
      1m 49s
    2. Using the menu system
      4m 30s
    3. The Quick Access Toolbar
      4m 41s
    4. The structure of a worksheet or workbook
      3m 41s
    5. Using the Formula bar
      1m 43s
    6. Using the Status bar
      2m 24s
    7. Navigation and mouse pointers
      2m 20s
    8. Shortcut menus and the Mini toolbar
      3m 24s
    9. Using the built-in help
      2m 54s
    10. Creating new files
      2m 11s
  3. 24m 1s
    1. Exploring data entry and editing techniques
      4m 41s
    2. Entering data with AutoFill
      4m 6s
    3. Working with dates and times
      3m 32s
    4. Using Undo and Redo
      4m 50s
    5. Adding comments
      2m 55s
    6. Using Save or Save As
      3m 57s
  4. 30m 7s
    1. Creating simple formulas: Totals and averages
      5m 25s
    2. Copying a formula for adjacent cells
      2m 54s
    3. Calculating year-to-date profits
      3m 9s
    4. Creating a percentage-increase formula
      4m 7s
    5. Working with relative, absolute, and mixed references
      4m 7s
    6. Using SUM and AVERAGE
      3m 25s
    7. Using other common functions
      7m 0s
  5. 46m 7s
    1. Exploring font styles and effects
      4m 7s
    2. Adjusting row heights and column widths
      3m 37s
    3. Working with alignment and Wrap Text
      4m 2s
    4. Designing borders
      3m 26s
    5. Exploring numeric and special formatting
      5m 36s
    6. Formatting numbers and dates
      4m 31s
    7. Conditional formatting
      4m 21s
    8. Creating and using tables
      9m 59s
    9. Inserting shapes, arrows, and other visual features
      6m 28s
  6. 20m 40s
    1. Inserting and deleting rows and columns
      4m 52s
    2. Hiding and unhiding rows and columns
      4m 2s
    3. Moving, copying, and inserting data
      5m 42s
    4. Finding and replacing data
      6m 4s
  7. 17m 51s
    1. Exploring the Page Layout tab and view
      7m 20s
    2. Previewing page breaks
      4m 56s
    3. Working with Page Setup and printing controls
      5m 35s
  8. 30m 30s
    1. Creating charts
      4m 36s
    2. Exploring chart types
      7m 47s
    3. Formatting charts
      5m 42s
    4. Working with axes, labels, gridlines, and other chart elements
      5m 35s
    5. Creating in-cell charts with sparklines
      6m 50s
  9. 12m 49s
    1. Freezing and unfreezing panes
      2m 39s
    2. Splitting screens horizontally and vertically
      4m 48s
    3. Showing necessary information with the Outlining feature
      5m 22s
  10. 23m 0s
    1. Displaying multiple worksheets and workbooks
      4m 17s
    2. Renaming, inserting, and deleting sheets
      2m 23s
    3. Moving, copying, and grouping sheets
      3m 39s
    4. Using formulas to link worksheets and workbooks
      6m 1s
    5. Locating and maintaining links
      6m 40s
  11. 20m 25s
    1. Using IF functions and relational operators
      3m 43s
    2. Getting approximate table data with the VLOOKUP function
      7m 6s
    3. Getting exact table data with the VLOOKUP function
      4m 42s
    4. Using the COUNTIF family of functions
      4m 54s
  12. 23m 50s
    1. Unlocking cells and protecting worksheets
      7m 50s
    2. Protecting workbooks
      2m 40s
    3. Assigning passwords to workbooks
      4m 41s
    4. Sharing workbooks
      4m 7s
    5. Tracking changes
      4m 32s
  13. 28m 32s
    1. Sorting data
      6m 9s
    2. Inserting subtotals in a sorted list
      8m 25s
    3. Using filters
      6m 16s
    4. Splitting data into multiple columns
      5m 4s
    5. Removing duplicate records
      2m 38s
  14. 35m 2s
    1. Creating PivotTables
      8m 36s
    2. Manipulating PivotTable data
      9m 47s
    3. Grouping by date and time
      6m 0s
    4. Grouping by other factors
      2m 33s
    5. Using slicers to clarify and manipulate fields
      4m 7s
    6. Using PivotCharts
      3m 59s
  15. 23m 29s
    1. Using Goal Seek
      6m 8s
    2. Using Solver
      6m 34s
    3. Using Scenario Manager
      6m 11s
    4. Using Data Tables
      4m 36s
  16. 24m 31s
    1. Definition and examples
      6m 48s
    2. Creating a simple macro
      7m 0s
    3. Running a macro
      10m 43s
  17. 29s
    1. Next steps
      29s

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