Excel is a convenient tool for not only hardcore analysts but also for office workers, as it allows them to quickly and effectively organize data and do complex calculations. They can even apply certain algorithms to these data. The main feature of Excel is its formula bar, which allows you to combine different functions to create the formula that suits your purpose.
Whenever you input a function, Excel will normally assist you by showing the structure of that function. However, this is only really useful for simple formulas. Complex formulas have a greater chance for errors because of the interactions between functions. What’s worse is that you will often be left without a good explanation as to what happened.
Common Excel Formula Errors
To help you fix your Excel formulas effectively, we have compiled a list of the most frequently encountered errors in Excel, as well as how to fix them. These errors as the following:
The #### Error
This is probably the easiest error to handle. In Excel, each cell will display a specific value, and even though the value can be as long as you want it to be, trying to have a tiny cell containing an excessively long string of value will give you the #### error. Fortunately, the solution is very simple. All you have to do is to extend the width of the cell until it can fit the value, and the problem will be resolved.
The #NAME? Error
When typing a formula, you have to be extra careful with the functions’ spelling because there is no autocorrect function. If you spell the name of a function wrong, the system will not be able to recognize what functions you are referring to. This is when this error will be displayed on the screen. To solve the error, simply check your spelling to make sure that everything is correct.
The #DIV/0! Error
Division by zero is theoretically impossible in conventional mathematics, and Excel has also taken that into account. If a division by zero exists in your formula, you will get the said error. Remember to check your values to prevent this error from occurring.
The #NULL! Error
The #NULL! error occurs when there is a syntactical error in your formula. Unlike a spelling error, a syntactical error refers to an error in the structure of the formula, such as missing a point or a semicolon. Like the #NAME? error, you will have to check back to see if the functions correspond to their syntactic structure.
The #VALUE! Error
This error is related to the value in the cells itself, not the structure of the formulas. You cannot multiply a number with a text, so if you accidentally do that in your formulas, this error will occur. Naturally, your solution is to find out which values in the cells you selected are not compatible with the others. A tip for you: numbers are aligned on the right side of a cell, while texts are on the left.
Mastering Excel formulas will take some time, and making mistakes is actually quite common as you start learning Excel. Don’t worry. While this will take some time to get used to, you will eventually master the software!