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Copilot in Microsoft Excel: Top 5 Uses (with Prompts)

Copilot In Microsoft Excel Top 5 Uses (with Prompts)

Microsoft Excel is one of the critical applications of the modern workplace. After all, no spreadsheet program can do it quite like Microsoft’s robust classic office program, which is one application in a suite of tools that have remained a constant in the office for decades.

However, with the onset of artificial intelligence, Microsoft has found new ways to innovate even in these classic programs. Microsoft Copilot utilises GPT-4, one of the world’s most powerful AI language models, to boost your workplace’s productivity. It can also be used in Microsoft Excel to take your spreadsheets to the stratosphere.

In this blog, we will go over the top five ways you can utilise Copilot in Microsoft Excel to take advantage of the power of artificial intelligence and boost your productivity and workflow.

Top Copilot in Microsoft Excel Uses

Quickly Create PivotTables

PivotTables are vital to using Microsoft Excel effectively. They let you summarise data and find trends, which can be integral to helping your organisation monitor and find success. But, creating a PivotTable takes time and effort — and you’ll need to take time out of your day to do so.

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You can easily use Copilot for Microsoft Excel to simplify the process. It lets you create a Pivot Table in just a single prompt. All you have to do is tell Copilot to “Create a PivotTable based on [your chosen data]),” and Copilot will quickly do so.

But, far more efficiently, you can ask Copilot about a statistic from a dataset, which will contextually make a Pivot Table. For example, you can ask, “What is the total value of my inventory?” and Copilot will create a Pivot Table to express the information that you’ve requested.

This will save you lots of time and help you be more productive —creating a PivotTable is a process that shouldn’t take time out of your day.

Create Data Visualisations

Data visualisation is critical to understanding and processing data visually. After all, numbers and raw data are much more complex for the brain to process than charts, graphs, and other data visualisation tools. 

However, creating a nice-looking visual can take time from your day. Ensuring that your chart is clear and conveys the information you want it to thoroughly and effectively can be a headache. However, Microsoft Copilot can do this with just a simple prompt.

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All you have to do is ask Copilot to visualise whatever you want it to— for example, you could tell it to “Visualise this table of data”, and it would do so. However, Copilot goes further than that — for instance, it works with data sets such as Python Code, meaning you can visualise any data you feed in Excel.

Rather than fiddling with parameters to ensure that your visualisation is perfect, Copilot does it all in seconds.

Discover Trends in Data

While we’re pretty good at finding trends in data, it’s easy for the human brain to miss trends and patterns in data. After all, sometimes you’ll see specific trends while missing others — and some trends are too subtle to be found by the naked eye.

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Microsoft Copilot can find all of these trends, ensuring you’re not going to miss a thing. It can help you find new trends and patterns in seconds by analysing the data thoroughly and picking out the most compelling trends.

All you have to do is ask Copilot to “Analyse [your chosen data] and summarise five key trends”, and Copilot will do so, giving you a complete analysis of your data within seconds.

Highlight, Sort and Filter Data

If unsorted, Microsoft Excel spreadsheets can become messy and complicated to navigate, meaning that finding critical information can be a maze. While Excel’s filtering and sorting tools are pretty good, it still takes a while to find what you’re looking for, but Copilot can do this in seconds.

You can ask Copilot to sort or filter your data in whatever way you’d like, such as “Sort this data by cost, lowest to highest,” or ask it to find a specific part of your data and highlight it for you. Like anything else in its toolset, Copilot can do so in seconds, saving you time and simplifying the whole process.

Generate Formula Columns

Formula columns are vital for calculations, as they let you turn multiple columns into whole calculations to save time and effort. But, creating them can still be a finicky process; after all, working out the correct formulas you need to create a more complex formula column can be a pain.

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Microsoft Copilot can take care of this in seconds, generating a formula column to fulfil your needs with a simple prompt. All you need to do is ask Copilot to “make a formula column based on [the specified data],” Copilot will do so by giving you a formula column to insert into your spreadsheet.

However, there is also an easier way to do this using Copilot. You can click the ‘show suggestions for formula columns’ button, and Copilot will give you tips for formula columns that you can use within this spreadsheet — tailored to make your workflow easier.

How to Get Started

Microsoft Copilot is a powerful tool that can genuinely empower your workflow. With it, you can turn tasks that would take time out of your day into the time it takes to type a simple sentence, letting you dedicate your time to more critical tasks.

Contact our experts today if you’re interested in starting with Microsoft 365 and Copilot but don’t know where to begin. We’ll help you get started and find your footing in the world of Microsoft 365.

Get in touch with us now and see how we can help.