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12 Excel Interview Questions and Answers To Help You Prepare

By indeed Editorial Team

Updated June 9, 2021 | Published January 24, 2020 Updated June 9, 2021 Published January 24, 2020TwitterLinkedInFacebookEmail This article has been approved by an indeed Career Coach


expertness in Excel is required for a phone number of roles in the master work force. For this reason, many interviews, across industries and occupation titles, might include Excel interview questions. Excel is an important business resource, and the questions provide you an opportunity to show technical art and mathematical think. In this article, learn all about answering Excel interview questions before your adjacent interview .

What to expect from Excel interview questions

Excel interview questions provide the opportunity to show you are highly knowing about the common spreadsheet software implemented in offices around the universe. Because Excel features and benefits are desirable, it is a wide used course of study. As a consequence, Excel interview questions could be deliver in a number of interviews, for positions from IT to account. There are many significant functions in Excel and you should be prepared to answer technical foul questions about Excel versus behavioral ones. Excel interview questions are only likely to make up only a minor separate of a larger consultation scheme, so they will likely focus intensely on the most substantive features of the software like formulas, functions and data formats. You should strive to answer as many Excel interview questions as possible by tying in a personal have. In the pursuit text, we ’ ll use the STAR method of answering interview questions, where applicable, to demonstrate how this formulaic approach can be beneficial. The STAR Interview Response Technique asks you to consider the follow strategy when answering interview questions :

  • situation : Describe a challenging position that relates to the doubt .
  • task : Explain your character in the solution, demonstrating tasks you deployed to complete it .
  • carry through : What action were you creditworthy for ?
  • resolving power : How did your solution lead to satisfactory consequence ?

Related : How to Use the STAR Interview Response Technique

Common Excel interview questions and answers

Excel interview questions will be technical in nature and offer an opportunity for you to speak on your experience and skill charge with the business resource. The follow are some distinctive Excel questions you might receive in an interview :

What are common data formats in Excel? How are they used?

This is the type of basic cardinal motion that might introduce a line of increasingly more complex interview questions about Excel. This is a doubt structured to gather your basic understand and cognition of the software. early basic Excel questions my admit :

  • What are some popular formulas you ’ ve used ?
  • What does a specific symbol entail in Excel ? ( For exemplar, “ How is $ used in Excel ? ” )
  • “ What ’ s the remainder ? ” questions asking to compare park features

example : “ here are the common datum formats in excel and how they are used. First, there are numbers that can be formatted as decimal points or round values. then, there are percentages which display a number as a helping of a whole, in which the unharmed is equal to 100. There are besides a numeral of ways you can display dates—depending on your region, you can choose the format that makes the most sense. last, strings of text can be a datum format as well. ”

What is the order of operations used in Excel formulas?

This is another question designed to test your foundational cognition of Excel but it besides challenges your mathematical remember. This can be answered in a straightforward way that correctly expresses the order of operations.

Consider being clear and directly here versus overthinking ways to tie in a personal know. These types of questions draw out strictly technical cognition and are designed to ensure you have the substantive critical think skills needed to get the answer. example : “ Excel formulas follow PEMDAS. This acronym stands for Parenthesis, Exponents, Multiplication, Division, Addition and Subtraction. ” Related : Data Analyst Cover Letter Examples

Explain VLOOKUP in common terms

A question that asks you to explain a specific serve or formula can assist in a greater understand of your chondritic cognition about authoritative features that are probably to play a function in the position for which you are interviewing. VLOOKUP is a common function that allows users to look up and aggregate data from early sheets into a column or table. It could be used by any professional who works with a big body of data and needs to be able to format it to show certain relationships and insights. When you ’ re asked to explain a mathematical concept in obviously terms, you want to make the officiate simple for person to understand, even if they have no previous feel with it. This question besides offers an opportunity to use personal experience in your explanation to further demonstrate your familiarity with the concept. example : “ VLOOKUP is a popular function of Excel that allows you to aggregate data across sets and sheets into one place where it can be used to draw specific insights. The components of a VLOOKUP are ‘ lookup_value ’ which defines what you are looking up. The ‘ table_array ’ describes where the data exists, broadly. The column index issue ( col_index_num ) informs the officiate of specifically where the data is in a postpone. The range can be true or false to describe whether the information returned should be an claim value. In my experience as a bookkeeper, I worked within Excel to maintain digital daily ledgers. every quarter I was tasked with going through all of the general sales data and separating sales by transaction code. Using a VLOOKUP, I was able to do this successfully and more efficiently. I saved so much meter I was able to sort the sales data a numeral of different ways to go above and beyond the initial request made of me, offering other authoritative insights to management. ”

What are some limitations of VLOOKUP?

This wonder allows you to demonstrate critical think, a soft skill that ’ s significant in a number of analytic roles. Offering limitations shows that not only do you have a thoroughly understand of the function, but you besides have the reasoning skills to describe its drawbacks. When delivering information like limitations, some business leaders may expect you to approach the conversation with positivity and delicacy. This is a good opportunity to show you can speak on technical challenges with delicacy. model : “ The major drawback of VLOOKUP is that it ’ sulfur well broken. Any shifting of column to add new data impacts the column index act and causes the formula to need to be manually re-applied. ”

How do you use a pivot table?

A interrogate that asks how you use something or how you do something is a good opportunity to talk in terms of specific examples. After all, at the core of this question is about you and your familiarity with the subject matter, so it makes sense to apply how you have used it in the past. A pivot postpone is an important Excel sport that shows up in frequently-asked questions by all sorts of professionals around the internet. This motion allows you to explain your resourcefulness with Excel and confirms your understanding of this popular practice. model : “ A pivot postpone is an essential cock to summarize, aggregate, reorganize, classify, group, count, average or calculate data stored across a database. I ’ ve used pivot tables as a database analyst to compare seasonal patronize patterns for my retail clients. For case, the Belcher Group wanted to know which of its brands did the most sales during the summer. They had a back-to-school crusade that ran July through August, and they asked me to determine which brand performed the best. I programmed a pivot table where Column A displayed the brands and Row 1 annotated the months July and August. In the body of the mesa I pulled data from the sales database that computed total sales per stigmatize, per calendar month. Using this information the Belcher Group was able to tell which of its child companies performed the best. ”

What is a spreadsheet?

here ’ s a basic question that might segue into a more building complex production line of Excel questions. Since not all positions that are required to use spreadsheets are technical—some may be fiscal or administrative, for example—a doubt like this lets you demonstrate functional technical foul competence in a short answer. exemplar : “ A spreadsheet is a digital daybook for storing values. It contains rows and column that make up cells where information can be held. ”

What are common functions of Microsoft Excel?

There are a phone number of ways to use Excel and countless ways it can apply to the character you are interviewing for. An sympathy of basic Excel functions provides insight into the ones you are familiar with, which can be an asset for the function. exemplar : “ Common functions used in Excel are mathematical functions, like SUM and DEGREE, coherent functions, like TRUE or FALSE, go steady and clock time functions, index match and pivot tables. ”

What’s the ribbon in Excel?

Answering this doubt displays a hardheaded cognition of how to work in Excel and function tools and resources available. example : “ The ribbon contains the Excel toolbar and shows useable items available in Excel. It can be toggled using CTRL + F1. ”

What’s an Excel Macro?

For people who use Excel in a way that is reproducible and repetitive, the ability to understand and create macros may be essential to the function. To answer this doubt, show you understand the determination of macros. exercise : “ Macros permit users to automate bare repeating tasks and instructions. Macros can be written for use or recorded and played when needed. ”

What are charts in Excel and how are they used?

There are a number of reasons charts can be utilitarian in Excel. For one, they show significant information in ways that are easy to understand. They besides provide those reading charts with valuable insights about data and the relationships that exist within a subset of data. For this reason, it may be important to demonstrate you understand how charts are used. example : “ Charts are graphic representations of data in Excel. They show data insights, like relationship and trends, in a way that ’ s easy to use and understand. ”

Name the two Macro languages in Excel.

This type of true forward interview requires a straight answer that displays your cognition of a higher level technical expression of Excel : Macro languages. example : “ VBA is the most normally used Macro lyric in Excel today. however, earlier versions of Excel used XLM. ”

How do you lock a worksheet to prevent people from editing it?

It ’ s possible to password protect worksheets in Excel. This is useful if you have a table of data that, if changed, would impact early dependencies, and for other reasons like user hierarchy authorizations. To demonstrate understanding, provide a childlike explanation of how to complete this process. example : “ An easy means to do this is using the menu barroom. Go to Review, choice Protect Sheet and enter a password when prompted. ”

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