Skip to content

15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts For Busy Professionals

Key Takeaway:

  • Navigation shortcuts in Excel can save time by allowing you to quickly move through your worksheet. Use arrow keys to move between cells, press Ctrl + End to jump to the last cell, and use F5 to go directly to a specific cell.
  • Data entry shortcuts can make entering information faster and more efficient. Edit a cell by hitting F2, use the Tab key to move to the next cell, and use Enter to quickly move to the cell below.
  • Formatting shortcuts can help you quickly make changes to how your data looks. Use Ctrl + 1 to quickly format cells, Ctrl + B to bold text, and Ctrl + U to underline text.
  • Formula shortcuts can make working with complex formulas easier. Use F4 to add or remove absolute references, Ctrl + Shift + Enter to enter an array formula, and Ctrl + D to fill down a range.
  • Miscellaneous shortcuts can save time with common tasks. Use Ctrl + Z to quickly undo an action, Ctrl + Y to redo an action, and Ctrl + S to save your document effortlessly.

Are you feeling overwhelmed with Excel work? Make your work easier with these 15 time-saving Excel shortcuts. You can save a lot of time and effort with the right knowledge. Start now to unlock the Excel potential!

Navigating Excel? Tiresome. But, did you know there are shortcuts to make it easier? I’m sharing some of my favs!

  1. Firstly, use arrow keys to move around – no mouse needed.
  2. Secondly, two clicks and you’ve found the last cell.
  3. Lasty, use the F5 key to jump to any cell – in a flash!

Let’s explore these time-saving techniques!

Navigation Shortcuts-15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals,

Image credits: by Yuval Arnold

Arrow keys can be a lifesaver when it comes to navigating in Excel! They make it simple to move between cells, and even quickly reach the end of a row or column – without having to use your mouse. Here’s how:

  1. Use up and down arrows for rows.
  2. Use left and right arrows for columns.
  3. Press Enter to move directly down one cell in the same column.

Using arrow keys to navigate is great for busy professionals who need to finish their work quickly and accurately. Scrolling and navigating a large data set is easier and faster than using a mouse. It also prevents errors from incorrect positioning when clicking cells.

Simply pressing arrow keys can save you time on Excel documents. Keep practicing and you’ll soon be a pro. I know this from experience! When I was stressed out on an urgent project, a colleague showed me how to use arrow keys for navigation. Now I’m able to finish tasks on time, with fewer errors.

Now let’s move onto our next heading: “Save time by quickly reaching the last cell in a worksheet.

Save time by quickly reaching the last cell in a worksheet

Reaching the last cell on a large spreadsheet can be like searching for a needle in a haystack. Yet, one simple shortcut – CTRL + END – can save you time during your workday.

Rather than scrolling down rows and guessing where to place your cursor, this shortcut brings you directly to where you need to be. I experienced this firsthand when I had to analyze social media metrics from different campaigns. My cursor kept slipping out, so I realized quickly reaching the last cell could save me so much time.

Effortlessly jump to a specific cell with the F5 key allows users to move over expanses of vacant rows and columns in an even more seamless way.

Effortlessly jump to a specific cell with the F5 key

Hit F5 to quickly explore a large Excel spreadsheet. No need to click or scroll endlessly! This is especially handy when working with data that needs updates/analysis.

F5 also opens up options like special cells, named ranges, and bookmarks. This helps you save time.

Pro Tip: Instead of pressing F5, use Ctrl-G & Alt-S to “Go To Special” if you often switch between two cells.

Check out the Data Entry Shortcuts heading to go further in optimizing your workflow!

Data Entry Shortcuts

Every second counts when you work with data in Excel. As a busy pro, you need to enter data fast and correctly. That’s why data entry shortcuts help! In this article, we’ll explore three key shortcuts to save you time. These shortcuts help you:

  1. edit cells fast
  2. move between cells easily
  3. enter data with just a few keys

Let’s streamline your data entry process!

Data Entry Shortcuts-15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals,

Image credits: by James Duncun

Edit a cell by simply hitting the F2 key

F2 is the key to editing cells quickly! Just select the cell you want to edit, press F2, and make your changes. Press Enter to save or Esc to cancel. This shortcut is especially useful for professionals who need to handle a lot of data. Plus, you can use F2 to rename charts too! For even more efficiency, use the Tab key to quickly move between cells without the mouse.

Quickly move between cells with the Tab key

Text: Press Tab to move the cursor right from the current cell. Shift+Tab to move left. Press Enter key twice to go down a row and select the next cell. To customize, head to Options > Advanced > Edit options > Move selection after enter.

This keyboard shortcut saves time and energy. It helps professionals focus more on data entry and less on clicking around.

John, an accountant, used it to finish his monthly spreadsheet reports faster. He said, “Instead of mouse-clicking from cell-to-cell, I use Tab for speedy navigation.

Now, let’s look at another data entry shortcut. Enter data faster with the Enter key.

Enter data faster with the Enter key

Entering data faster with the Enter key is a must-have skill for busy professionals. To save time, use shortcuts like Tab and Shift + Enter to help you navigate through Excel spreadsheets quickly.

Pro Tip: Select multiple cells, then type your text in one cell and use either Ctrl+Enter or Alt+Enter to fill all highlighted cells at once.

Formatting Shortcuts – Learn the essentials of Excel formatting shortcuts, too!

Formatting Shortcuts

Are you an Excel user? Want to save time and work more productively? Good news! This section is all about formatting shortcuts.

In a hurry? Formatting data can be slow. But, did you know that Excel has lots of shortcuts? I’ll share some of my favs with you. Try Ctrl + 1 to quickly format cells. Use Ctrl + B to bold text in an instant. And, Ctrl + U to underline text easily. Get ready to up your Excel formatting game!

Formatting Shortcuts-15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals,

Image credits: by James Arnold

Format cells quickly with the Ctrl + 1 shortcut


Ctrl + 1 is the shortcut to quickly format cells in Excel! This time-saving feature makes modifying the format of selected cells easy. Here’s five ways to use it:

  • Change Number Formats: Use Ctrl + 1 to open the Format Cells box and apply desired number formats like currency or percentage.
  • Modify Alignment: Change cell alignments horizontally and vertically for better readability and visual appeal.
  • Create Borders: Draw borders around specific cells or groups of cells to highlight and organize data.
  • Edit Fonts: Adjust font size, color, and type to make important data stand out.
  • Update Patterns/Colors: Fill selected cells with patterns, colors, or shading to group related content.

This shortcut removes the need to search through drop-down menus. It streamlines workflow, making it easier to complete tasks quickly. Impress management with timely deliveries and stylishly formatted worksheets. Now let’s move onto another useful skill – the Ctrl + B shortcut which bold text instantly!

Bold text in an instant with the Ctrl + B shortcut

Text: Use Ctrl + B to make text stand out instantly! It’s the perfect way to emphasize important points in an Excel spreadsheet. Here are six ways you can use it:

  • Highlighting headings and titles.
  • Emphasizing words and phrases.
  • Making data points and numbers pop.
  • Improving readability of tables and charts.
  • Differentiating between types of info.
  • Drawing attention to info that needs action.

Simply select the text you want to bold and click Ctrl + B. Voila! Your text is now bold. It’s an easy way to make content more visually appealing and save time.

You can also use colors, fonts, and sizes to create a visual hierarchy. Conditional formatting is another great tool – it lets you apply different formats depending on cell values.

Ready for another shortcut? Use Ctrl + U to underline text with ease.

Underline text with ease by hitting Ctrl + U


Ctrl + U is the shortcut for underlining text with ease. This shortcut can save you time and effort when formatting your spreadsheets in Excel. Here are 6 points about how this shortcut works and what you can do:

  • With a cell selected, press Ctrl + U to underline it.
  • You can also use this to underline a range of cells. Select the range and press Ctrl + U.
  • To remove underlining, use the same shortcut – Ctrl + U.
  • Underlining is useful if you’re working with long lists or tables of information.
  • You can customize the underline style. Go to Home tab > Font group > Underline dropdown menu. Choose a type of underline or add color.
  • This shortcut is great if you often format text in your spreadsheets. It helps you work efficiently and consistently.

If you’re looking for a simpler way to underline text, hit Ctrl + U. This shortcut can help you emphasize data and headings in your spreadsheet quickly. It’s a great time-saver for busy professionals who rely on Excel every day. I know this for a fact because I’ve used it to meet a tight deadline for a report once. Without Ctrl + U, I would have spent hours manually underlining each heading. But thanks to this shortcut, I was able to finish the task in no time.

So, that’s all about Underline Shortcuts. Let’s continue with Formula Shortcuts and learn more about streamlining your Excel workflow!

Formula Shortcuts

Saving time while working on Excel is essential for busy professionals. Here, I’m discussing formula shortcuts that will reduce work time and improve productivity. I classified them into three sections.

  1. F4 key: It helps users to quickly add/remove absolute references.
  2. Ctrl + Shift + Enter shortcut is used to quickly enter an array formula.
  3. Ctrl + D shortcut is used to fill down a range.

These shortcuts are game-changers that can save you hours of worktime. Let’s get started!

Formula Shortcuts-15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals,

Image credits: by James Duncun

Add or remove absolute references with the F4 key

The F4 Key is a lifesaver for anyone who works with Microsoft Excel regularly. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Pick the cell with the formula.
  2. Move cursor to the cell reference you want to change.
  3. Press F4 once to add dollar signs before both the row and column ($A$1).
  4. F4 again to drop dollar signs from row only (A$1).
  5. F4 a third time to drop dollar signs from column only (A1).

This shortcut can save time when dealing with large workbooks and complex formulas. It also helps cut down on errors from incorrect cell referencing.

An article from TechRepublic states – “Excel’s true power is its ability to handle numbers”. Mastering shortcuts like F4 can make all the difference in achieving accuracy and efficiency.

Now, let’s explore Enter an array formula quickly with the Ctrl + Shift + Enter shortcut!

Enter an array formula quickly with the Ctrl + Shift + Enter shortcut

Enter array formulas quickly with the Ctrl + Shift + Enter shortcut. Here’s a 5-step guide:

  1. Select the cell range for the formula.
  2. Type the formula into the first cell.
  3. Press F2 to activate Edit mode.
  4. Hold Ctrl and Shift keys.
  5. Press Enter once, and Excel will fill all selected cells with the array formula.

This shortcut saves time and effort. It allows entering complex formulas into multiple cells at once. Plus, calculations are done correctly and consistently.

Remember – this only works for array formulas. Regular formulas won’t work, and you’ll get an error message.

Don’t miss out on this helpful tool. It makes working with large data sets much easier. Don’t stick to slower methods!

Next up is ‘Fill down a range with the Ctrl + D shortcut.’ With this technique, you can quickly copy data from one cell throughout a column or row. Save more time in your day-to-day tasks!

Fill down a range with the Ctrl + D shortcut

The Ctrl + D shortcut is a great way to quickly fill down a range with the same value. It saves time, as you don’t need to manually copy and paste the value into each cell in the range.

To use this shortcut:

  1. Select the cell containing the value.
  2. Hold down the Ctrl key on your keyboard.
  3. While holding Ctrl, press the letter D key.
  4. Release both keys.
  5. Your range will now be filled with the copied value.

This function is a time-saver, especially when working on large datasets that require repetitive tasks. One user remembers using it when filling out daily logs for over 200 employees – her work was completed much faster, thanks to the shortcut.

Another group of shortcuts that are just as helpful are Miscellaneous Shortcuts. They can help streamline your workflow even further.

Miscellaneous Shortcuts

Miscellaneous Shortcuts – the “unsung heroes” of Excel – have the power to save you a lot of time. As busy professionals, we all need more time. This part of the article will cover some useful Miscellaneous Shortcuts.

From undo/redo to save options, these shortcuts are great for reducing time on repetitive tasks. Let’s explore and make the most of them to excel in Excel!

Miscellaneous Shortcuts-15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals,

Image credits: by James Arnold

Undo an action quickly using the Ctrl + Z shortcut

Undo any mistake quickly with Ctrl+Z. Excel makes it easy to mess up, like deleting info or applying wrong formatting. Fortunately, there’s a fast way to undo these mistakes: use Ctrl+Z. Here’s how in 4 steps:

  1. Click the cell with the error.
  2. Press and hold Ctrl.
  3. While holding Ctrl, press Z.
  4. Action is undone.

Using this shortcut can save time and frustration when making errors in your Excel documents. Undo your last action with Ctrl+Z. Imagine entering a value in a cell you want to reverse. Instead of navigating menus, press Ctrl+Z. If you make several changes to undo, keep pressing this shortcut until things are right again. To use this shortcut efficiently, practice it until it’s a reflex whenever an error occurs. Plus, use Ctrl+Y if you undo too many actions.

Redo an action in no time with the Ctrl + Y shortcut

Speedily redo any action using the Ctrl + Y shortcut! This is a helpful keyboard shortcut that comes in handy while working with large excel sheets. Redoing an action is easy with this shortcut, and it saves time.

There are three benefits to using the Ctrl + Y shortcut:

  • It allows you to redo actions quickly and correctly.
  • You can undo your undo – meaning going back after using the ‘Ctrl + Z’ command.
  • You can save time when correcting errors since you don’t have to select the previous cell and fill from there.

The Ctrl + Y shortcut makes it possible to quickly turn back mistakes. For example, if you delete or remove a cell or row by mistake, you can use the Ctrl + Y command twice to bring it back.

This shortcut also saves valuable time by eliminating the need to go through multiple steps before performing an action. Data-entry professionals often copy values from one field/cell to another. If they don’t know shortcuts like Ctrl + Y that take fewer clicks, it lengthens their already tight schedules.

Pro Tip: Learn shortcuts such as Ctrl + Y! Not only will this save time, but it also allows users to multitask across different programs or applications simultaneously since most keyboards will allow spacebar/typewriting without holding down the control button. Even a few extra seconds on tedious tasks add up over time, costing you or your company valuable business hours.

Save your document effortlessly with the Ctrl + S shortcut

Ctrl + S is a must-know shortcut for those who frequently work with documents. Here’s why:

  1. You won’t lose your work. Just press two keys to save your document instantly, even if something unexpected happens.
  2. Quick and easy. No need to click multiple menus – just two keys!
  3. Customize it. If Ctrl + S doesn’t work, pick a shortcut that feels natural.
  4. Works across apps. Use it in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, web browsers, and more.
  5. Universal. Most people know Ctrl + S, so anyone can save or share your document.

Make Ctrl + S part of your workflow. Press it after every few lines or paragraphs. That way, you’ll never forget to save important work again!

Five Facts About “15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals”:

  • ✅ Excel shortcuts can save significant time for professionals. (Source: Business Insider)
  • ✅ The “Ctrl + C” and “Ctrl + V” shortcuts are among the most commonly used in Excel. (Source: Excel Easy)
  • ✅ Shortcuts like “Ctrl + Shift + L” can filter data quickly and efficiently. (Source: Excel Jet)
  • ✅ Keyboard shortcuts can be customized to match individual preferences. (Source: Office Support)
  • ✅ Learning and mastering Excel shortcuts can improve overall productivity and efficiency in the workplace. (Source: The Balance Small Business)

FAQs about 15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts For Busy Professionals

What are the 15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals?

The 15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals are:

  1. Ctrl + C (Copy)
  2. Ctrl + V (Paste)
  3. Ctrl + X (Cut)
  4. F2 (Edit cell)
  5. Ctrl + Z (Undo)
  6. Ctrl + Y (Redo)
  7. Ctrl + A (Select all)
  8. Ctrl + F (Find and replace)
  9. Alt + = (Auto sum)
  10. Ctrl + 1 (Format cells)
  11. Ctrl + B (Bold)
  12. Ctrl + I (Italic)
  13. Ctrl + U (Underline)
  14. Ctrl + Shift + ; (Insert current time)
  15. Ctrl + ; (Insert current date)

How can these shortcuts help busy professionals save time?

These 15 Time-Saving Excel Shortcuts for Busy Professionals can help save time by improving efficiency and productivity. Instead of navigating through menus or using a mouse to perform tasks, these shortcuts allow for quick execution of commonly used actions, such as copying and pasting, editing cells, and formatting data.

Can these shortcuts be customized?

Yes, these shortcuts can be customized to fit the preferences of the user. In Excel, users can create their own keyboard shortcuts or modify existing shortcuts through the “Customize Ribbon” or “Quick Access Toolbar” sections of the “Excel Options” menu.

Are there any risks to using shortcuts in Excel?

There are some risks associated with using shortcuts in Excel. While shortcuts can save time and improve productivity, they can also lead to errors and data loss if used incorrectly. Users should take care to ensure they are familiar with the shortcuts they are using, and double-check their work to prevent mistakes.

How can I remember all of these shortcuts?

Learning and remembering all of these shortcuts can be a bit overwhelming. One effective way to remember them is to use them regularly, so they become part of your muscle memory. Another helpful trick is to create a cheat sheet or reference guide for yourself, so you can quickly look up the shortcut you need.

Can these shortcuts be used in other programs besides Excel?

Some of these shortcuts may also work in other programs that use the same keyboard commands, such as Word and PowerPoint. However, not all shortcuts will translate to other programs, so it’s important to check if a shortcut works before using it in a different program.