What are the key Excel skills for specialists in your profession? Are there specific functions or features that you use all the time? If someone wanted to improve their Excel skills to prepare for a job in your area, what would you tell them?
Excel Skills for Specialists
Someone asked me if there was a site that listed Excel skills required for different professions, or specialization areas. For example, what Excel skills do you need as an engineer, a research scientist, an accountant, or an investment analyst?
I didn’t know of an all-in-one list, and Google didn’t help me find one either. It’s a good place to get started though!
Basic Excel Skills
Before you worry about specialized Excel skills, be sure that you have the basic Excel skills mastered. That link takes you to a list on this blog, and there’s good advice in the comments too.
Excel Specialization Tips
Since I couldn’t find an all-in-one list, let’s start one. Here are a few articles that focus on Excel specializations. They look helpful, at a first glance, but I haven’t researched them thoroughly, or clicked all the links on them.
This is a short list of what I looked for, before including an article with Excel skills for specialists:
- not just a list of function names – examples, Excel tips and career advice too
- don’t have 47 pop-ups or auto-playing videos
- free info, not just a promo for paid courses
If there are any other good articles that you know of, please mention them in the comments, and I’ll take a look.
Excel for Finance and Accounting
- Excel Skills for Wall Street – Wall Street Oasis forum question – What resources in Excel did you use on your first project?
- Excel for Finance/Accounting – On Quora, “What should be in a university’s Excel course for finance and accounting?” Great tips in the comments
- Guide to Excel for Finance – Good intro, on the Investopedia site, but a bit annoying to navigate. Use the scrollable topic list at the top left.
- Excel Tricks for CAs – Top tips from Excel wizards in the ICAS, a professional accountants’ group.
Excel for Data Analysts
- Essential Excel Skills – On Juice Analytics, the topics they covered in a client’s Excel course for data analysis
- Formulas for Aspiring Analysts – Chandoo’s list of key functions, with good examples, and links to learn more
- Excel Tricks for Analyzing Data – On Analytics Vidhya, a list of key functions, features and shortcuts for data analysis
Excel for Engineers and Scientists
- Importance of Excel in Engineering – Reddit question and many helpful comments. It’s Reddit though, so things can go off the rails occasionally!
- Excel Skills for Chemical Engineer – Another Reddit question – “Which skills are most important? How do I go about practising these skills?”
Create Your Own List of Skills
Here’s another way to figure out which specialized Excel skills you need – look at the lesson outlines for Excel courses, or the table of contents for Excel books.
- Look for Excel courses on Coursera, Udemy, and other websites. The lesson outlines are usually available, and quite detailed. For example, take a look at the syllabus for Coursera’s Mastering Data Analysis in Excel course. Click the View Full Syllabus button, then click the Expand link in each lesson.
- On Amazon, search for books in a specialized area, such as Excel for Engineer and Scientists. Click on a book that looks interesting, then use the “Look Inside” feature to see the table of contents.
Make notes about the topics that are covered, and the functions they’ll teach. Then, find websites where you can learn more about those Excel skills for specialists, on your own.