Histograms Can Help Organize Data

Data is all around us. That’s not the problem. The problem is organizing and making sense of that data. When it comes to determining the frequency of specific data, manually grouping and counting data can be a chore. Excel can do the work for you.

Between the histogram analysis tool and the array function, you will be sure to get the data you need – in a way you can use it. A histogram, also known as a frequency distribution, is a table or chart that counts the number of times a range of values occurs in a set of data. Histograms work well when you want to measure performance.

Excel’s histogram analysis tool is part of the Analysis ToolPak add-in. To verify that you have the add-in installed, open the Tools menu. If you don’t see a choice for Data Analysis, you’ll need to install the add-in. To do so, select Tools/Add-Ins from the menu bar. Then, select the Analysis ToolPak and Analysis ToolPak - VBA check boxes. Finally, click OK.

The “how to” guide linked to this article will walk you step-by-step through building a histogram. There will be many instances when you need to measure performance. Whether you’re measuring sales results, looking at time variable data or compiling a benchmark, histograms can help.

Upcoming CPE Webinars

Jul 24
In this presentation Excel expert David Ringstrom, CPA revisits the Excel feature you should be using, but probably aren't. The Table feature offers the ability to both boost the integrity of your spreadsheets, but reduce maintenance as well.
Jul 31
In this session Excel expert David Ringstrom helps beginners get up to speed in Microsoft Excel. However, even experienced Excel users will learn some new tricks, particularly when David discusses under-utilized aspects of Excel.
Aug 5
This webcast will focus on accounting and disclosure policies for various types of consolidations and business combinations.