When plotting Actuals and Forecasts on a single line chart you may want to use a vertical dotted line to identify where the Actuals finish and the Forecasts begin.
Here’s another way to create a Step Chart. This one is quicker. I wrote previously about using a scatter plot and error bars but it required a lot of chart changes. This one hacks a line chart and requires no chart changes.
The TreeMap is like a square pie chart, but it has the added ability to show a hierarchy.
The Step chart is not a standard Excel chart but it is a useful way to display values over time. You have probably seen a step chart but you may not have known what it was called. It sort of looks like the city skyline or something you would create on an Etch-a-Sketch.
Pie charts have a lot of drawbacks and limitations. One major limitation is they can’t handle negatives. One of Excel’s new charts can help out.
You may have noticed that Excel gives every chart a unique number when it creates the chart. It is displayed in the Name Box in the left corner above the grid. You have the ability to change that name and make it more descriptive.
We’ve all been there, our charts are looking just right and then some one inserts a column or changes the column width and throws out all our perfectly proportioned charts.
Charts have a behaviour that many people don’t realise. That behaviour can also be turned off. If you hide a row or column in the data range used by a chart, the values will also be hidden on the chart.
Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. This applies to many thing in Excel and especially to charts. With charts the “less is more” philosophy works well. Have a look at the four charts in the image below.
Dashboard Charts are the ultimate goal of most Power BI reports, so let’s dive in.
I learned about a chart Axis option in Excel during a recent webinar – thanks to one of the attendees. You can show the Axis entries below the chart – this is handy for column charts that display negatives.
I was reading a magazine last week and a chart caught my eye. I thought I could improve it. I recreated it in Excel – its close to the original – see below – I didn’t quite match the column colour.
It is common in accounting to compare numbers. Either Actuals vs Budget or this year vs last year. There are different charts that people use for this comparison. How about plotting the variance instead?
Check out my follow up article and VIDEO on the ITBDigital website on how to convert a vertical bullet chart into a horizontal one.
For the original bullet chart post click here
These techniques are based on ones in the great book
Excel 2007 Dashboards and Reports For Dummies by Michael Alexander
Check out my July 2014 article on Bullet charts on the CPA Australia ITBDigital website – click here to see the article. The video is below.
Bullet charts were developed by Stephen Few – see his pdf on bullet charts click here.
The technique is based on one used by Michael Alexander in his great book Excel 2007 Dashboards and Reports for Dummies by Wiley.
The term grouping in Excel has many different meanings, probably more than any other term in Excel.
When building dashboards in Excel you frequently need to have multiple charts that are exactly the same size. Luckily Excel makes this reasonably easy to achieve.
This post is attempting to replicate a slope chart.
I took a standard Line chart as seen in the top of this image. And then used the Design Tab option Switch Row/Column to create the slope chart at the bottom of the image.
If you need to move or amend a lot of graphics at once Excel has a feature that can save you time and effort. It’s been around for a while, but it’s been hidden away in the latest few versions.
Line charts are frequently used in Excel but their default settings leave a lot to be desired. See the transformation of a standard line chart to a simpler and easier to read line chart.