Incident Tracking Spreadsheet
Patterns are good to use if you want to identify an area as defunct or currently not in use. Some use a strikeout on the information already there but a pattern can leave the information fairly easy to read but at the same time provide a kind of "construction area" type look to signify that this information is not currently in use on the spreadsheet. The number options refer to the type of information you re placing in the cell. If you tell Excel that you are entering currency numbers then it will automatically add the dollar sign (or others if using a different currency) and decimal point as you enter numbers.
Here are a few things to keep in mind while constructing your spreadsheet. Fit to Screen Fit to Page Although your wealth of information may warrant it don t make a spreadsheet that is a massive three to four screens long. A spreadsheet of this caliber is no fun for anyone especially on screen. Rolling around a spreadsheet that size especially one you aren t familiar with can become quite frustrating. Under the "Print Preview" option you can force the printer to fit the document to one page but then everything is decreased in size and makes it even harder to read the information.
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Bonus Tip: Stick with Conventions I mentioned before that the buttons on the hard-to-use spreadsheet were square. If you look at just about any website using a button the ratio of width to height falls roughly in the range 2:1 to about 5:1. Sizes too far outside this range look a bit strange and are not as readily identifiable as buttons. Hyperlinks that you create in Excel can be formatted any colour you like but unless there is a good reason stick with the well-known blue and underlined as in ExcelProductivityTips. The spreadsheet templates that used to ship with Excel were formatted with light yellow for areas of data entry and light green for results. Some people still use this convention.
Yet there is no tool for project management that is more popular or widespread than the spreadsheet despite the fact that spreadsheets are not designed to be project support tools. Even in organizations with an established project management tool spreadsheets are used. There are obvious reasons for this. A spreadsheet program is on almost every computer in every organization people are familiar with spreadsheets and how to use them and people are pre-disposed to use these "office" types of software tools to solve problems. And I am right there with them. I love using spreadsheets to track all kinds of data.