Excel goes Beyond Text and Numbers


For many years Microsoft Excel users have been using spreadsheets to import, organise and analyse data and for some it is the ultimate decision-making tool.Nevertheless, up to this point Microsoft Excel has only had a couple of base types of data you can work with i.e. text and numbers. Essentially using the 2D grid and formulas to capture, analyse and collaborate on data. However as many of us know not all data is flat and forcing data into that 2D structure has its limits.

With Microsoft’s overhaul to Excel and the introduction of linked data types they have added a third dimension to what you can build with Excel. For the first time, instead of basic strings of text or numbers these connected data types mean that a single cell in the grid could contain a live, connected, and rich set of information about objects such as stocks, currencies, cities, and countries. That single cell is now intelligent in how it works with features like formulas, filters, and charts.

Linked data types work by packing a set of structured data into a single cell, which can then be referenced by the rest of the spreadsheet. For example, excel recognises that “France” is a country and automatically associates it with additional attributes such as population and GDP. These attributes can then be populated into different cells or used directly in formulas to stay updated with the latest data.

Excel Datatypes

Work with your own business data as datatypes

Additionally, if you are a Microsoft Power BI user, Excel will automatically connect to Power BI allowing any data you’ve published within the business to be easily discoverable and flow into Excel as a structured data type. If you have data you’d like to work with as a data type in Excel you just publish it into Power BI and the rest is taken care of for you, including anyone else with access.

With added AI capabilities, leveraging Power BI as an ideal source of reliable business data allows for shared, controlled, and secure access to data from all kinds of corporate sources.
People rely on up-to-date information to make the best decisions and data types that are connected to live business data via Power BI ensure you get exactly that.

Hikari are a Microsoft Gold partner in Data Analytics with great success in implementing Power BI projects across many industries.

Contact Us today to speak with one of our Power BI experts about your specific requirements.

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