Excel Calculations Without Formulas

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Excel Calculations without Formulas. If you use Excel on a regular basis then you probably know all about formulas and functions but it’s too easy to get into a mental rut and neglect some of Excel’s simpler operations. Here’s a typical example, my worksheet contains the Sales Forecast figures for the next few months and I’ve just been told that I now have to increase all the figures by 4%.

So what do you do? Copy and Paste all the numbers to another worksheet, write a formula to multiply everything by 1.04 then Copy and Paste Special as Values to fix the numbers and finally, copy all the new numbers back to the original worksheet. Well, you could but….

Paste Special Operations

Instead of removing the numbers to another worksheet and doing formulas you can manipulate the cell values in place. Type the multiplier value of 1.04 into an empty cell (any cell will do) and then copy it. Now that you have your value on the Clipboard you can apply it to the numbers.

Select your numbers and then choose Paste Special and in the Operation section click the Multiply option button. Click the OK button and all your numbers are uplifted by 4%. You don’t need the 1.04 multiplier in the cell any more and you can delete it whenever convenient.

Halving numbers, doubling numbers, converting negatives to positives (multiply by minus 1), adding one set of numbers to another or subtracting. These tasks can all be effected without writing a single formula. The Paste Special command is usually available in the right-click shortcut menu or the Edit menu or the Paste control on the Home tab for newer Excel versions.

Finding the Numbers in a worksheet

When you have numbers in a worksheet that you need to select and you don’t want to have to do the selection yourself try using Go To Special.

For example, in the previous example I wanted to select the numbers on a worksheet so that I could multiply them. I did not want to select the cells containing formulas, just the cells with normal numbers or, in Excel speak, the numeric constants.

Choose Go To Special and then click the controls to specify what class of worksheet data you want to have selected. In this case, the Constants option button and the Numbers check box. Click the OK button and Excel selects those values wherever they are on the active worksheet.

Should you select a range before choosing Go To Special then the cell selection is confined to the currently selected range.

So, where is Go To Special? It depends on the version of Excel that you are using, if you have one of the older versions with the drop down menus then you should choose Edit, GoTo and then click the Special command button. In newer Excel versions with the ribbon, go to the Find & Select control on the extreme right hand side of the Home tab, click the control and it’s in the drop down menu.

Related Courses

Microsoft Excel Introduction – Link

Microsoft Excel Intermediate – Link