LARA MELLOR MICROSOFT TRAINING BLOG

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How do you SWITCH data in Excel?

How do you SWITCH data in Excel?

Until Excel 2019 the SWITCH function did not exist but since then it has provided a viable alternative to using nested IF functions, IFS or VLOOKUPs. It evaluates one value (called the expression) against a list of values and returns the result corresponding to the...

Finally – Breakout rooms in Microsoft Teams!

Finally – Breakout rooms in Microsoft Teams!

After a long wait breakout rooms have now landed in Microsoft Teams. Although they are available there are likely to be some changes to the finer detail over the next few months as some of the little quirks are ironed out. Breakout rooms can currently only be created...

How do I use Icons in Microsoft Office?

How do I use Icons in Microsoft Office?

Have you come across Icons?  For years we have been able to add pictures and shapes to files to add interest and focus but recently Icons have been added to that list.  This options is only available in Microsoft 365.  If you used clipart back in the day then icons...

What is Snip and Sketch?

What is Snip and Sketch?

One of the many tools that come with Windows 10 is Snip and Sketch (formerly the Snipping tool).  It’s a feature I use all the time whether to add images to blogs, manuals or quick reference guides.  What I didn't consider that I can't use the Snip and Sketch tool to...

Can I run a webinar from Microsoft Teams?

Can I run a webinar from Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams meetings are great to get together a few people but for a larger scale online webinar the option of Live event is going to a much better bet.  The organisers can line up content for a more seamless experience, changing smoothly from one presenter to...

How to create a Quick Reference Guide in Microsoft Word

How to create a Quick Reference Guide in Microsoft Word

This blog has been prompted by the need to create a quick reference guide (QRG) recently for a client.  A quick reference guide is designed to cover the key points on a topic at a glance but doesn’t go into all the detail you might expect from a manual.  It’s enough...

Microsoft Teams templates and more new features

Microsoft Teams templates and more new features

Microsoft Teams just keeps on giving by adding more functionality or making the existing functionality easier to use.  While most of the recent changes have been in the meeting side of teams other parts of the software have also been tweaked to improve the user...

Cell Styles in Microsoft Excel

Cell Styles in Microsoft Excel

Consistent formatting helps to make documents look tidier and makes them easier to read and understand.  One feature that can help with this is cell styles.  There are over 40 pre-created styles for you to get started with or you can create your own bespoke designs to...

What are cover pages in Microsoft Word?

What are cover pages in Microsoft Word?

So you have got this great document but you want it to really stand out with a funky front page.  This is where cover pages can be used.  There are 16 available directly from Microsoft Word which can be modified as required.  There are 3 more available at office.com...

Top 3 reasons to Format as Table in Microsoft Excel

Top 3 reasons to Format as Table in Microsoft Excel

An often underutilised option in Microsoft Excel is format as table.  However, it can have a significant positive impact on your productivity when working with data stored in a table layout. It can be accessed from the Format as Table option on the Home tab or from...

3 Page Background features in Microsoft Word

3 Page Background features in Microsoft Word

 There are 3 page background features that you can change in Microsoft Word.  This article refers to the version of Word available from the Microsoft 365 subscription.  Although these options are available in other versions their location on the ribbon may vary. The...

I have no ideas what to do with my Excel data!!

I have no ideas what to do with my Excel data!!

With the volume of data we now get bombarded with on a day to day basis it’s not always easy to decide what to do with it all. If you have no idea how to get started why not let Excel provide some ideas for you. The ideas button is available in Microsoft Excel if you...

How do I troubleshoot Excel Calculations?

How do I troubleshoot Excel Calculations?

Excel is a brilliant calculation package but when your calculation goes wrong where do you start to troubleshoot Excel calculations?  This article gives some key features that are available that will help. Double clicking on the cell By double clicking on the cell...

PowerPoint Subtitles

PowerPoint Subtitles

Subtitles are a new feature in PowerPoint as part of the Microsoft 365 suite.  I attended a training session about accessibility the other week and realised that many who have created and run presentations for years would probably be unaware this option exists.  A lot...

Filled Maps in Excel

Filled Maps in Excel

Do you work with geographical data?  By showing this information on a map the data can be understood more easily.  It can be used with countries, counties or post codes. Setting up the data for filled maps The first step involves creating a simple summary table...

Manage a Successful Teams Meeting

Manage a Successful Teams Meeting

As a change from my usual blogs about the features available in Microsoft products this is aimed more at how to use the software effectively in general to manage a successful Teams Meeting. Since March 2020 online meeting software has become a staple for many...

Top 3 Calculation Tips

Top 3 Calculation Tips

Want to know my top 3 calculation tips when your calculations go wrong?  When creating calculations in Excel there are some built-in features that are helpful to know about and understand to guide you along the way. Automatic correction In some cases Excel will...

Top 6 tips when creating slides

Top 6 tips when creating slides

Here are my top 6 tips when creating slides.  This is a slightly different post to most that I create because it is less about how to use the software and more about the design side of the PowerPoint slides. We have all seen presentations using Microsoft PowerPoint...

17 fabulous Visualisations in Power BI

17 fabulous Visualisations in Power BI

There are a wide range of Visualisations in Power BI to help those viewing the published report to understand the data they are portraying quickly and efficiently.  The chart options have already been looked at in an earlier blog so here we will be looking at all the...

What is Microsoft Sway?

What is Microsoft Sway?

Sway is one of the apps in the Microsoft 365 suite and is used to create presentations.  While it isn’t as flexible as Microsoft PowerPoint it has a different look and feel which can be a refreshing change and is quick and easy to create once you know how it works....

Where has spell check gone?

Where has spell check gone?

With Microsoft 365 constantly updating all its products it is no wonder that at times options that we have used for years just disappear.  One of these is spell check!!  But where has it gone!!  There is a new kid on the block with the Editor icon on the Review tab....

18 Chart Types in Power BI

18 Chart Types in Power BI

Power Bi has a wide range of different types of visualisation to help those viewing the published report to understand the data they are portraying effectively.  Many of these are charts or graphs which are great at displaying relative sizes of data, trends over time,...

How to Sort and Filter using Dynamic Array Functions in Microsoft Excel

How to Sort and Filter using Dynamic Array Functions in Microsoft Excel

Dynamic array functions are only available in the Microsoft 365 version of Excel.  They are very different to many of the other functions as they allow you to work with multiple values at the same time in a formula.  The result is not normally one solitary cell but a...

5 steps to create Microsoft Forms

5 steps to create Microsoft Forms

Microsoft Forms is a form creation app.  It can be used to produce surveys, quizzes and polls and is part of the Microsoft 365 suite. There are so many apps available in Microsoft 365 and this is a little cracker!!  It is so simple to use and something that anyone who...

5 video features in PowerPoint including animated GIFs

5 video features in PowerPoint including animated GIFs

Beyond the obvious option of inserting a video file into a PowerPoint presentation there are several other options worth looking into from helping compatibility to reducing file size, from creating a video to send or an animated GIF to use in social media (my new...

Top 10 Microsoft Teams New Features

Top 10 Microsoft Teams New Features

More and more people have been partaking in online meetings over the last couple of months whether that be using Microsoft Teams, Zoom, google hangouts or other software. Microsoft Teams was set up as a business collaboration tool but with larger meetings now being...

Guest Blog: Top 5 tips for tidying up customer email lists in Excel

Guest Blog: Top 5 tips for tidying up customer email lists in Excel

In the third of a series of guest blogs, Alan Sawyers of A.S. Design, Web & Marketing looks at his top five tips for tidying up customer email lists in Excel.​.. I look after several ecommerce sites. Some of them my own, some of them for clients. And one of the...

Top 7 Microsoft Project options

Top 7 Microsoft Project options

Microsoft Project default options are really worth considering changing.  Some of these will depend on how you use the software and others really should be altered. All these options are found from the File menu under options.  Many can be altered for this project or...

Top 8 Sending email options

Top 8 Sending email options

Most of the time when we create emails we type in the information, maybe add a file attachment, and then send across to the recipient. But what options are available that can help us, and the person we are sending to, before we ping that email across?  Here, my top 8...

Top 6 Power BI Conditional Formatting Options

Top 6 Power BI Conditional Formatting Options

If you haven’t some across conditional formatting before then it allows formatting to automatically be applied based on the data.  If the data changes then the formatting automatically updates.  Conditional formatting has been a useful tool in Microsoft Excel for...

Top 7 Excel Date functions

Top 7 Excel Date functions

Excel date functions can be used to manipulate dates in many different ways.  You may need to know how many days it is since you sent an invoice or analyse when your sales take place in the month.  You may need to summarise your data based on the month or calculate...

Microsoft Teams keyboard shortcuts

Microsoft Teams keyboard shortcuts

Microsoft Teams keyboard shortcuts can be used to navigate around this product more quickly.  This latest blog follows on from the series of blogs already written on general keyboard shortcuts and more specific ones for Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and...

Guest Blog: How to Deal with Tech Overwhelm

Guest Blog: How to Deal with Tech Overwhelm

In this second guest blog the lovely Laura Forsyth from Forsyth Business Consultancy talks about how to deal with, and keep on top of, the volume of technology in our lives. Technology has rapidly advanced over the history of mankind, through the recorded pictographic...

Top 5 Tips for opening files quickly

Top 5 Tips for opening files quickly

We open files all the time so anything we can do to make this process quicker has got to be beneficial.  Depending on how often you work with files and where they are located will depend on which of these options are likely to be of most benefit.  Why not give some of...

Use Design Ideas to create mind blowing slides

Use Design Ideas to create mind blowing slides

Have you come across Design ideas in Microsoft PowerPoint?  It is a new innovative option that can help you change a basic presentation into something far more interesting with minimal effort. It is so easy to create presentations where all the slides look very...

Do headers and footers get you in a pickle?

Do headers and footers get you in a pickle?

Have you ever tried getting different headers and footers in different sections of a Word document?  It can be a tricky process but if you follow this logical set of steps you will find it simple. For example, you might need a title page with no header or footer at...

Top 6 Save as types

Top 6 Save as types

The majority of the Microsoft suite of products have these options when you are saving.  Although the default options of Excel Workbook, Word Document, PowerPoint presentation etc are used most of the time these other Save As options are extremely useful in certain...

Top 6 Microsoft Word options

Top 6 Microsoft Word options

Did you know that you don’t have to put up with many of the default settings you get with Word if they don’t fit with the way you work.  Here are 6 of my favourite Microsoft Word options to change.  All these options are available from the File menu and options. Open...

Working with Multiple Projects

Working with Multiple Projects

Individual projects are a great way to plan for what you and your immediate team are doing but sometimes this forms part of a bigger picture and it is important to see how your part fits into the whole.  This is where working with multiple projects becomes useful. ...

Top 8 Excel default options

Top 8 Excel default options

Did you know that you don’t have to put up with many of the default settings you get with Excel if they don’t fit with the way you work.  Here are 8 of my favourites.  All these options are available from the File menu and options. 1. Changing the default save...

Connecting Data in Power BI

Connecting Data in Power BI

I’ve previously written about what Power BI is and why it’s such a useful tool but I’m now going to look in more detail about connecting the data in other applications into Power BI so you can then work with it. Connecting Notice that the data is not copied or...

Guest Blog: Your Start Up Business and Computers

Guest Blog: Your Start Up Business and Computers

In this first guest blog the wonderful Michael Donkin from Northumberland Computer Support talks about what you need to be aware of with regards to computers when you start up your business. So, you’ve started up in business on your own? Well done! That’s the hard...

Top 5 Outlook defaults to change

Top 5 Outlook defaults to change

Outlook has loads of really cool default options that can be altered to make your use of the package even better by tailoring it to your exact requirements.  The default options are available from the file tab and options.  Here are my top 5 favourite Outlook...

Is there an easier way to navigate around large Excel data?

Is there an easier way to navigate around large Excel data?

When you have a large document it can become tricky to move around but with a few special tools it can become a lot easier to navigate Excel. Navigating to the top and bottom of the document There are some great keyboard shortcuts that can help you with this. CTRL +...

What is Power Query used for in Excel?

What is Power Query used for in Excel?

How many times have you ended up using loads of VLOOKUPs to show data from 2 or more different tables together?  Although this works it is very memory intensive which on large spreadsheet can cause delays in updating at best or crashes at worst.  Have you always...

Help!! How Microsoft can put you on the right track

Help!! How Microsoft can put you on the right track

There has always been a help facility with the Microsoft packages but it has certainly changed over the years giving assistance on all aspects of the software. Clippy Remember good old Clippy who used to pop up at the most inopportune moment, waving at you and trying...

5 Useful Tools to Align objects in PowerPoint

5 Useful Tools to Align objects in PowerPoint

It is not always easy to align objects accurately and quickly in PowerPoint but you will need to do this if you re creating a custom design in PowerPoint.  Luckily there are some features in the package that can help. These tips work in a similar way in most of...

How to create a wonderful Watermark!

How to create a wonderful Watermark!

Do you want to mark your documents as confidential or add your company logo subtly in the background on each page.  If so then watermarks are the option you need. Creating a Watermark The watermark option has moved between the tabs on different versions of the...

Microsoft PowerPoint Hidden Options

Microsoft PowerPoint Hidden Options

There are plenty of options available directly on the ribbons in Microsoft PowerPoint but some sections have plenty more options that you might need at some point.  These options are the ones that Microsoft thinks most users are less likely to need but might...

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