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- Understanding how Excel records and stores dates and times
- Looking at standard date/time entry options and acceptable alternatives
- Using the TODAY and NOW functions
- Customizing date formats
- Exploring keyboard shortcuts
- Formatting time for hours over 24
- Calculating differences across dates and times
- Rounding calculations
- Working with holidays
- Validating with dates
- Converting formatted dates to usable data
Skill Level Intermediate
Although, Excel offers numerous built-in formatting options for handling dates and times. There are two quick keystroke shortcuts that are going to really help a lot of people to quickly reformat the data. I wouldn't say there is anything unacceptable about the data in Column F and many people are familiar with this particular display, but the keystroke shortcut you might want to know about, and it does have a distinct advantage for some people. I'm doing this for the entire column. It's Ctrl+Shift+# sign. And we'll see the date difference. Now a quick contrast here, we'll press Ctrl+Z. The advantage that a lot of people see in this is that there is no doubt as to which month it is.
And particularly if you work with data that some times is brought in from different countries where they use the month and date a bit differently than we might in the United States, sometimes you want to know without batting an eye quickly what month it is for sure. And so this particular display, and it might take up a little bit more horizontal space here and there, but it's instantly readable and everybody understands what it means. It's Ctrl+Shift+#. Now when it comes to times, as we see here, nothing wrong with these times.
These are formatted with 24-hour type display times. We can always right-click, for example, in Column D here. That's where the data is in question. Format Cells, a lot of built-in variations for time. The keystroke shortcut that you might want to be aware of though, Ctrl+Shift+@. And I guess it's sort of a feeble way to remember this might be, I'll meet you at 3 o'clock. Think of at (@) meeting time. This option does use the AM/PM indicator, so it takes up more space, but once again, for many people that's ideal. It's exactly what they need.
Ctrl+Shift+@ for times and for dates Ctrl+Shift+#.
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