What Roles Require Excel Skills
Virtually every industry needs workers with basic Excel skills one study found that Excel skills are required for 82% of middle-skill positions. Advanced Excel experience is only required for niche positions, such as an economist or data analyst.
CareerKarma compiled a list of some of the best jobs that use Excel in 2022, as well as the market outlook for hiring these roles.
As you can see, many of these jobs are industry agnostic. Administrative assistants, office clerks, and sales managers can find jobs in many different companies. As you write your job descriptions, think about how your open role will be competing against potential employers who may well be outside of your industry.
Excel skills can be categorized as beginner , intermediate and advanced. Excel assessments vary depending on which skills are considered intermediate vs. advanced. For instance, some consider pivot tables to be relatively intermediate.
It depends on the role for which you are hiring, the industry youre in, and if there are other employees who have compatible skills on your team already.
Heres a breakdown of how to design a skills assessment to understand how your job applicants stack up.
What Are Common Data Formats In Excel How Are They Used
This type of basic fundamental question might introduce a line of progressively more complex interview questions about Excel. This question is structured to gather your basic understanding and knowledge of the software.
Other basic Excel questions may include:
What are some popular formulas youve used?
What does a specific symbol mean in Excel?
Whats the difference? questions asking to compare common features
Example: Here are the common data 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 that display a number as a portion of a whole, in which the whole is equal to 100. There are also a number of ways you can display datesdepending on your region, you can choose the format that makes the most sense. Lastly, strings of text can be a data format as well.
Related: 4 Data Types in Microsoft Excel
How To Facilitate An Excel Test
The right time to give your Excel test can vary based on the job youre hiring for and how many applicants you get. The most logical time to have job applicants complete an Excel test is during applicant screening as part of the interview process. You have the candidates commitment at this point as they have learned they are in the running for the job and have been selected for an interview.
The test can be administered by email or in person, depending on your preference.
If you choose to email the test to your candidates, make sure you only email the test sheet and not the answer sheet. The biggest benefit to emailing the Excel test to the applicant is that you can gauge their interest level in the position without too much investment. If they dont respond to your email request, they probably werent that interested or qualified.
The downside to emailing the test to the applicant is that they could use outside sources to complete the test. When youre giving a candidate an Excel test, you really want to know what they knownot what they can look up.
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What Is The Purpose Of Flash Fill And How Do You Activate It
Flash Fill is an Excel feature that can be used to quickly fill cells with data based on user behaviors. Flash Fill is often turned on by default, so to use it you can begin typing. If Excel identifies a pattern, the program will suggest data for the cell. You can press enter to accept suggested data in Flash Fill. If Flash Fill is turned off, you can activate it by selecting Tools > Options > Advanced > Editing Options and clicking the checkbox that says “Automatically Flash Fill.”
Typical Format Of An Excel Test
The Excel test may be presented as a series of multiple-choicequestions or it may use interactive software to simulate the use of Excels interface.
Some companies will set a test they have built themselves. This would usually be an interactive test and will often involve working with Excel software itself. In the majority of cases, companies will use specifically designed software from a test provider.
Multiple-choice tests will include questions covering every area of the software, so candidates will need to be very familiar with key functions and layout. The multiple-choice questions are pulled at random from a large pool of possible questions, so no test is the same.
The simulation format is more common for Excel tests. Here candidates must complete a series of tasks on an Excel spreadsheet, according to their skill level.
Candidates will be asked to sit a basic, intermediate or advanced level test, depending on the position they are applying for. We’ll cover each in turn.
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How Do You Use A Pivot Table
A question 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 table is an important Excel feature that shows up in frequently-asked questions by all sorts of professionals around the internet. This question allows you to explain your resourcefulness with Excel and confirms your understanding of this popular practice.
Example: A pivot table is an essential tool to summarize, aggregate, reorganize, sort, group, count, average or compute data stored across a database. Ive used pivot tables as a database analyst to compare seasonal shopping patterns for my retail clients.
For example, the Belcher Group wanted to know which of its brands did the most sales during the summer. They had a back-to-school campaign 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 table I pulled information from the sales database that computed total sales per brand, per month. Using this information the Belcher Group was able to tell which of its child companies performed the best.”
What Is A Spreadsheet
Heres a basic question that might segue into a more complex line of Excel questions. Since not all positions that are required to use spreadsheets are technicalsome may be financial or administrative, for examplea question like this lets you demonstrate functional technical competence in a short answer.
Example:A spreadsheet is a digital ledger for storing values. It contains rows and columns that make up cells where information can be held.
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What Are The Wildcards Available In Excel
Wildcards only work with text data. Excel has three wildcards.
This refers to any number of characters.
The example stated below filters the customers whose name ends with a.
For that, we use *a.
It represents one single character.
The example below shows how to filter a particular customer name.
It is used to identify a wildcard character in the text.
In the following example, we are filtering How?* using the tilde symbol.
Starting With The Basic Excel Skills Assessment
There are a few skills that any employee using Excel should have. While of course, its not something you should use for every position, those who are applying for high-level jobs should be administered a more complex test that assesses specific skills. However, if an employee is to use Excel on a day to basis, they should take the basic Excel skills assessment.
This Excel assessment includes testing the employee on their use of keyboard shortcuts, cell references, and ranges with data. The candidate should know how to use spreadsheet formatting, as well as Zoom in a cell.
About The Excel Test Questions
Many job roles require at least a basic Excel knowledge level, including administrative assistants and other clerical positions. To make sure our preparation matches your Excel skills, there are three levels of Excel tests: basic, intermediate and advanced level. Our preparation packs are designed to cover each of these levels to give you an idea of what to expect during your actual assessment.
Our full Excel PrepPacks include two modes full of sample Excel test questions and answers to stimulate your learning process and bring you to the skill level you desire.
What Is A Pre
A pre-employment Microsoft Excel test is an assessment given to job candidates to determine their current grasp of the spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel. When used during the hiring process, this test can help you narrow down your pool of candidates by weeding out those applicants who donât have the software knowledge you need.
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How Will You Pass Arguments To Vba Function
Arguments can be passed to a VBA function as a reference or as a value.
Below is an example to illustrate both the usages.
Dim x As Integer
If you run the cells by passing the values as a reference, it will display 40 both the times. When we pass arguments by reference, we are referencing the original value. The original value of x is changed in the function.
When we pass the arguments by value, we are passing a copy to the function. The original value is not changed. Hence, the second MsgBox will display the original value 10.
Basic Excel Interview Questions About Pivot Tables
The following 10 basic Excel interview questions are all about pivot tables. Find out more about your candidates knowledge in this area by asking them some of the questions in this section.
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Prepare Online For The Microsoft Excel Assessment Tests Immediately
JobTestPrep offers dozens of highly effective preparation materials to help you successfully pass your Microsoft Excel assessment tests. Our PrepPacks were designed to improve your chances of successfully landing your dream job. You will be able to quickly identify and eliminate any weaknesses prior to taking your Microsoft Excel assessment test by using JobTestPrep’s resources.
Excel Interview Questions You Need To Get Right With Leila Gharani
Leila is a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional . She explains Excel VLOOKUP function and limitations, how absolute reference in Excel differ from relative cell reference? Other topics covered are What is a PivotTable and why should you use it? What is conditional formatting?When would you use the IF Function or a Nested IF in Excel?
Your Turn: Take The Excel Test
Here are the ten questions.
Some of the questions require using a date. I recorded thislesson on January 31, 2020, so my answers are dependent on that date.
What Are Macros In Excel Create A Macro To Automate A Task
Macro is a program that resides within the Excel file. The use of it is to automate repetitive tasks that you would like to perform in Excel.
To record a macro, you can either go to the Developer tab and click on Record Macro or access it from the View tab.
Now that we are done with the intermediate level of the Excel interview questions, lets move on to the advanced level of Excel interview questions.
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How To Test Advanced Excel Skills
Advanced Excel skills are often the most difficult for a recruiter to assess. These skills go beyond the expertise of a normal user with an advanced Excel user is known as a power user someone who uses the software beyond the standard capabilities.
There are more than 475 different Excel formulas that an assessment test could cover. An advanced Excel test, therefore, should focus on the functions that are most relevant to your company. An advanced Excel user should be familiar with most, if not all of Excels functions and can process spreadsheet data with graphs, pivot tables, and automation. These users are able to build spreadsheet models, templates, and dashboards for other users in the organization who are working with limited knowledge.
At Vervoe, we offerpreconfigured advanced Excel tests for you to use, testing Excel features such as:
- Creating a pivot table and other charts
- Advanced conditional formatting rules
- Visual Basic for Applications
- The ability to analyze data using advanced functions and formulas
There are other advanced skills that may apply, depending on your recruitment process. For more ideas on what questions to add to an Excel assessment test, check out our guide, Hiring An Excel Expert: Advanced Excel Skills Checklist.
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Microsoft Excel Test: Considerations For Recruiters
From a Microsoft Excel skills test, recruiters can evaluate a job applicantâs mastery of Excel and their level of competence in working with the Excel features needed for the job.
A candidate may claim to have an advanced level of knowledge of Excel, but an assessment test may reveal that they only know the basics. The Excel test can help recruiters determine which job applicant is the best candidate for the job.
What Is The Difference Between A Function And A Subroutine In Vba
A function is responsible for returning the value of the task it is performing.
Meanwhile, subroutines dont return the value of the task it is performing.
They are called by a variable.
They can be recalled from anywhere in the program, in multiple types.
Functions are used as it is in spreadsheets as formulas.
Subroutines are not used directly in spreadsheets as formulas.
Functions are used to carry out repetitive tasks, and it, in turn, returns a value.
Users are required to insert a value in the desired cell before fetching the result of the subroutine.
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Excel Skills That Are Being Evaluated
As part of Basic Microsoft Excel Skills test employers are looking to ensure that candidates have the following skills
- Ability to navigate and modify an Excel workbook by identifying common tools, applying basic keyboard shortcuts, and manipulating columns and rows
- Ability to apply basic sorting and filtering options as well as statistical functions to explore and summarize values
- Ability to customize the look and feel of a workbook using cell formatting tools
As part of Basic Microsoft Excel Skills test candidates are being tested for their ability to navigate the Excel user interface quickly and efficiently in order to access the right features and perform simple tasks from determining the best way to open a recently closed Workbook to using the correct formula to perform automatic calculations. Candidates will be required to answer multiple-choice questions based on Excel spreadsheets, charts and tables filled with sample data, as well as images of Excel buttons and tools, testing their ability to:
Excel Test Results: Grading
The Excel Test Results file contains the test answers, so do not send this file to your job applicants. It is for grading purposes only and should be used as a guide to examine how well the individual performed on their assessment. Pay attention to individual questions and not just the final score, as some applicants may score lower overall but have more proficiency in the area you need.
Scroll through the images below for information on what each results sheet illustrates about your candidate.
The completed CLUBDATA tab shows how effectively your candidate can input, format, filter, and sort data, as well as use formulas, to standardize client names, email addresses, and other data.
The completed PIVOT tab shows the candidates ability to create and manage a pivot table using provided data and manipulate the data within the pivot table to deliver the desired results.
The completed RECORDCOUNT tab demonstrates the candidates ability to use the created pivot table to count values and grand totals using tabs.
The completed ALLFEMALE tab shows the candidates ability to sort, extract, and format data in the spreadsheet such as name, year, and birthdate.
The completed ALLFEMALESPORTS tab shows the candidates ability to use LEGENDS, VALUES, and AXIS tools to extract data and create an aesthetically pleasing chart.
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