The Most Important Excel Skills Accounting and Finance Professionals Must Have

If you work in the accounting or finance fields, you are almost guaranteed to spend some time in Microsoft Excel. This quintessential spreadsheet program has remained relevant for decades, mainly due to its flexibility, versatility, and user-friendly design.

Excel can also provide data-driven insights that can help facilitate business decisions and client recommendations. Plus, it has calculation capabilities built-in, making it extremely convenient in a wide range of scenarios.

However, to work as an accounting or finance professional, you do need to understand some of Excel’s more advanced capabilities. If you want to ensure career success, here are a few Excel skills you must have.

Formulas and Functions

Excel’s mathematical capabilities are what helped the program rise to prominence in the fields of accounting and finance.

Having a firm grasp of the available formulas and functions is a must for accounting and finance professionals. If you aren’t comfortable with them, it’s wise to increase your skill level to help you advance your career.

Pivot Table Analysis

Pivot tables and pivot charts allow accounting and finance professionals to gain meaningful insights from data. They can access multiple information sources and support a deep dive into the data.

Being able to perform a pivot table analysis should be seen as an essential Excel skill for anyone working in a finance-oriented role.

Charts and Visualizations

At times, trying to derive meaning from rows and columns full of numbers is a challenge, particularly if you are dealing with a substantial amount of data. Charts and visualizations help make the information more accessible by creating a graphical presentation of the data. This not only helps with analysis but also with showing the data to another party, especially those who may not be as familiar with financial concepts.

Conditional Formatting

With conditional formatting, you can adjust the look of particular cells based on whether they meet certain conditions, making it easier to track critical details or examine the spreadsheets for specific information.

For example, outgoing payments (represented by negative amounts on a balance sheet) could be displayed in red, meaning the number is negative. Similarly, approaching due dates can be color-coded or bolded to draw attention to the cells.

Ultimately, all the Excel skills listed above should be considered must-haves for any accounting or finance professional. If you would like to know more or are seeking new employment opportunities, the team at The Squires Group can help. Contact us to discuss your career goals with one of our knowledgeable staff members today and see how our accounting and finance industry expertise can benefit you.

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