Custom Microsoft Excel Tracker Templates for Business
What is a Microsoft Excel Tracker Workbook?
Generally speaking, Microsoft Excel tracker templates are an Excel file with a very narrow and specific use, usually, tracking one type of data. An Excel tracker is basically a simple list of like items that can be monitored. Examples of what custom Excel trackers might track are items such as sales, clients, or certification dates. The most basic of tracker files will usually be used by one person, on their local drive, others may or may not see the output of the file.
Trackers are designed to be rapid data entry tools built lean and mean to get a simple job done, creating a list of like items for tracking purposes.
Typically, trackers are relatively small files with just a few tabs in them. They can range from super simple single-tab workbooks to super complex applications.
Basic trackers do not use advanced Excel functions or coding. The most basic might have just one tab, no formulas, and maybe a handful of columns.
Advanced trackers can be very powerful, leveraging advanced functions such as the XLookup or SumIfs. Many contain advanced data visualization tools like Pivot Tables with Pivot Charts for analysis and reporting. In an advanced workbook, the user can add new data to the file, either manually or programmatically. The focus of all trackers, regardless of complexity should be an easy-to-use graphical user interface.
No matter the level of complexity, ease of use is central to the design and function of Excel trackers. How complicated your file needs to be will depend on your exact needs.
If you need help with your Excel tracking workbook, give us a call or shoot us an email, we are here to help.
Just How Easy is it to use an Automated Tracker Template in Microsoft Excel – This Easy
Excel Should Be Easy To Use
Our Microsoft Excel Tracking Spreadsheet Templates are Built for Business
Businesses have a lot of data, and much of that data is hand keyed into Excel spreadsheets by office staff, often into some sort of Excel tracker. Clerks will for example key data into a list in an Excel file, so that they can quickly reference certain aspects of it, such as expiration or product pricing. If you have a list of product prices, staff can quickly view the list to see the price of any item of interest. They can also change the price in the file, as needed. As such the list should always be up to date. You might even print out the list and give it to other departments.
Usually, these lists are created quickly on the fly, without any attention being given to the long-term use of the file, or its design. But with these quickly created files, ease of use is often an issue. Poorly built files can take too long to update, can allow for errors, etc. Very often the user of the file does not have the Excel programming skills necessary to make updates or changes to the structure of the file. In that case, it is recommended that you hire an Excel consulting firm to assist you with your specific needs.
What these businesses need is a custom Microsoft Excel Tracking Spreadsheet Template for their office staff to use. A professionally built, super user-friendly Excel file, that anyone can use, regardless of their skill level.
Why use a custom-built Template: The reasoning behind the recommended use of an Excel Tracker “Template” is that the users of the Excel tracking files are often clerical or general office staff, and not seasoned Microsoft Excel programmers. Hence the use of a locked-down, protected, and controlled “Template” based environment is for ease of use and accessibility, regardless of skills. The 100% custom, Excel tracker templates we build for our clients are centered around the user and their use of the file. We use as much automation built in as possible, for this aim.
At Excel and Access, LLC, our company has been building custom trackers in Microsoft Excel for our clients, since 2003. Over the decades we have built some very nice Excel trackers for a broad range of organizations, including Microsoft. All of our trackers are 100% custom to the client and their needs, from the relatively simple to the powerfully complex. In 2013 we built dozens of custom templates directly for the Microsoft Corporation.
Our most basic Microsoft Excel tracking workbooks can be super simple, and super quick to build. If you don’t add vba code, Pivot Tables, or UserForms, you can build a custom tracker in just a few hours.
Our most advanced trackers are fully integrated and fully automated with a point-n-click GUI. The more automated they are, the easier they are to use. We can make them extremely powerful by leveraging advanced Excel vba programming. An advanced workbook can even send out reports via email, programmatically, via the use of Excel macros or coding.
How do you use a Microsoft Excel Tracker Template?
You add data to it, either manually or programmatically. Trackers are list based, and new items are added to the list as they come in. You may have one new item a day, or you may have hundreds. Usually there is one data tab, with one data table on it, that is the list of tracked items. You add your items to the data tab. There might not be much else to the file if it is a super simple tracker.
For more advanced trackers you may add Excel Pivot Tables and Pivot Charts with Slicers, maybe some Conditional Formatting. , In the most advanced files that we build, Excel UserForms are used to control the user during data entry.
Ease of Usage: You may add new items once or twice a week, or you may add items all day long, it really depends on what you are tracking. If you are going to regularly add new items to the list, then the graphical user interface (GUI) becomes more important, as it drives the user experience, and determines what data can be added. In those cases, I recommend considering using Excel UserForms for rapid and controlled data entry.
How do you know if you need a “Custom-Built” Microsoft Excel tracker for your particular business?
If you find yourself building lists of items that you want to track at work, then you most likely need an Excel tracker. If you need to have it custom built, that depends on your Excel programming skills. If you are an intermediate Excel programmer, then you should be able to build a nice tracker on your own, without the need of our help.
But if you do not know how to build an intermediate Excel application, then you will need to hire a firm such as ours, to custom build your file for you.
Very often you will have a list of like items either written on paper or listed on a single tab in an Excel workbook. While both of those will allow you to see a list of items, adding to the list, querying the list, creating charts or reports on the list, those are only done in the Excel file, not on paper. Using Microsoft Excel to build your tracker is the best way to go for combined power and ease of use.
Custom trackers are built for ease of use: The idea of using the tracker in Excel is to allow you, the user, to use as little time as possible to update the list of tracked items, while also allowing you to get the most out of the data, quickly and efficiently. It is basically a productivity tool, built in the familiar Excel application.
Common uses of Microsoft Excel Tracker Templates in a Business Setting
In business settings, Microsoft Excel is often used like a small database, where a person enters detailed records, into one or more data tables. While Excel is not an actual database, such as Microsoft Access, SQL Server or Azure, it can be used for ad hoc data collection, analysis, and reporting.
In a custom Excel tracker for business, you will be entering data into a table, much as you would in an Access database. But in an Access database you usually do so via an Access Form. In an Excel spreadsheet, you can type into a tab or in an Excel UserForm.
Who in the business setting uses an Excel tracker: Trackers are often used at the clerical or office support type positions. In these positions, the staff are closer to that of an Excel “user” than an Excel “programmer“. That is why you want a tracker that is built around the user experience with efficiency as the focus. Build the tracker as automated as possible for ease of use, for those without strong Excel skills.
Businesses will use a variety of trackers, to track all sorts of data. HIPAA tracking and CPE Certification tracking are two great examples. These trackers will let you know who is in compliance, who is in need of updating their certification, and when said certification expires, etc.
Excel Experts Tip: Use Conditional Formatting to let you know what items are soon to expire ( See image below, columns Q & R ).
10 Common Reasons for using Microsoft Excel Trackers in a Business or Healthcare Setting:
- Track Invoices BEFORE they go past due
- Track HIPAA Certification BEFORE it expires
- Track CPE’s for CPA’s BEFORE they expire
- Track product prices
- Track sales
- Track payroll – Timesheet Tracker
- Track incoming phone calls
- Track new Leads
- Weight loss tracker
- Anytime you would create a list, to track items, that warrants the use of a Custom-built Tracker in Microsoft Excel
Which Employees use MS Excel Tracking Templates
Trackers are used by employees at all levels, but most often they are used by office staff, not by the CEO or VP of Finance. The reason this is the case is based on how they are used. Microsoft Excel Trackers are created to allow an Excel user to quickly and easily enter data that they want to track, into a Microsoft Excel wordbook. They are a rapid data entry tool, for small datasets with a very specific use. Used almost like a pad of paper, adding the new record, below the last one.
Trackers are not usually formula driven, though statistical functions are often used to summarize the data. Pivot Tables with Pivot Charts are used in a tracker, to summarize data as well, while also providing powerful drill down capabilities.
Our most advanced tracking templates are often used by business analysts. Business analysts usually have strong Excel skills and able to make changes to the file, as needed. The more advanced trackers tend to be very powerful, super user friendly, and they tend to have a lot of automation built into them. As such we often use Custom Excel dashboards as a powerful interactive tool for visualizing and drilling down into the data.
Data Visualization Tools included in our most advanced Excel tracker workbooks: Charts, Graphs, Pivot Tables, Pivot Charts, Conditional Formatting and Excel UserForms are common components to our most advanced Microsoft Excel workbook-based trackers. Yet with all that power, an average officer worker can run them with ease, even if they are new to Excel. Now that is a Smarter Microsoft Solution.
“an average officer worker can run our custom Excel trackers with ease”
Why use a “Custom” Microsoft Excel Tracking Template
Custom, inhouse, or off the shelf? Does your company need a custom Microsoft Excel tracker built specifically for your business or will an in-house or even off the shelf tracker work just as well for you? Much of that depends on your needs for your file. The more basic your needs, the easier it is to build inhouse, or to buy off of the shelf.
The first question is, do you have a list of requirements for your tracker, and if so, how important is it that your file has all of those features and capabilities?
The second question is, can you get all of those features in an off the shelf application, without a lot of extras? If not, does your staff have the Excel programming skills needed to build the tracker your organization needs, meeting all of your requirements? If you said no to both of these, then a custom tracker might be the perfect tool for your staff.
A custom tracking template is often the best way to go. Very often, when an employee is tasked with tracking a list of data, they will do so either on paper, in Google Docs, or in an Excel file. They usually just create a new file, and they start typing, with little or no thought to design. As such, the file is usually cumbersome, clunky, not easy to update, inefficient, and not suited to summarize or to report on the data.
Usually, the cause of the issues with the tracker files are simple, the person tasked with building the tracking file is not an Excel programmer, but rather an Excel user, so how would they know how to build a proper tracking file in Excel? It is not in their wheelhouse; the wrong person is being asked to build the file.
Two Examples of custom Microsoft Excel Trackers for Business:
Example #1: Let’s say you have a list of employees, and their accrued vacation, each record has a pending expiration date. Let’s also say that you want to know what staff members need to take their vacation, 60-days before they lose it. This is the perfect example of a very simple Excel tracking file. This file will let you know which employees need to be notified, informing them that they are about to lose their vacation time as it will not be accrued.
Without this tracker, you will have issues with employees that are upset that they did not take their vacation, and now they lost it. Tracker Templates make working in Excel easy.
Example #2: Let’s say you have a list of CPAs that need to renew their CPE credits for the new year, based on their anniversary date. An Excel tracker would be the perfect tool for this. As the date draws near, the Excel tracker will use Conditional Formatting to visually show you who is about to go past due. You can set the conditional Formatting to notify you in 10 days, 30 days, etc. Adding the use of Conditional Formatting makes the tracker a bit more advanced and much easier to use.
Excel Experts Advice: To avoid missing dates, you would want to include Conditional Formatting, highlighting cells based on a date, in your tracker.
Spot the date before the item goes past due.
If you are not sure, we offer free consultations, contact us today, and we can discuss your needs in detail, and we can let you know if a custom tracking template will work for you.
Our Custom Microsoft Excel Tracker Templates are Built with the User Experience at Focus
6 Advanced Excel features that provide a powerful, interactive user experience:
The more advanced features you add to your tracker the easier it is to use, and the more it will do. If others within your organization will view your tracker, or if you need to provide output with say drill-down abilities, then you may want to consider using many of the advanced features below.
Remember, a 100% custom tracker can be fully automated an integrated, and if built properly, anyone can use the file, regardless of their skills in Excel.
- Pivots: Pivot Tables, Pivot Charts, with Slicers
- Interactive Charts and Graphs
- Conditional Formatting
- Macros / VBA
- Protected environment to control the user
Excel Experts Note: Microsoft Excel UserForms are a powerful graphical user interface, providing an efficient and controlled way to enter data into an Excel spreadsheet. Anyone can use an Excel UserForm which really makes them useful. They work much like a basic Microsoft Access database form, but this is in Microsoft Excel. Excel UserForms are the most advanced feature of Microsoft Excel.
Microsoft Excel UserForms allow the user to quickly tab through the fields on the form, typing the data as you go. Some versions have drop-down lists on the UserForms that eliminate the need to type. Once the data is entered, simply hit the “Append” button and your work is done. Microsoft Excel VBA coding will place the new record into the Excel Tracker’s data tab.
What if you have too much data to manually type into your tracker?
If you already have your data in a “Soft Copy” format (Electronic copy, such as csv, txt, xls, .doc), then your staff will not need to spend time manually typing data into your Excel tracker. What would take hours can be done in seconds simply by running an Excel macro. This is what we do in our advanced trackers, by using a combination of advanced formulas and Excel macros to manipulate the electronic data, programmatically. (I.E., automation and integration via VBA).
Where is “electronic data” located: You might have your data in another workbook, in an Access database, or in an online database such as Azure. If you have data in any of these applications, our expert Excel programmers can use Excel vba automation and integration to pull the desired data directly into the tracking template.
Programmatically importing your data is a huge time saver, and one of the most advanced features of our most advanced Excel trackers.
Web Based Data: If you pull your data from an online data provider, we can usually use their API to get the data we need, much like pulling it from the other data sources mentioned here.
Excel Experts Note: Visual Basic for Applications ( VBA, aka macros ) is the code behind the Microsoft Office 365 Suite of Applications, such as Excel, Word, Outlook, and Access. The code allows the programmer the ability to automate a single application, such as Excel, or to integrate any of the Office and Database applications, into one seamless solution.
Integration and automation of the Microsoft applications is what sets Microsoft’s business applications far ahead of the pack. VBA makes all of this possible; you cannot do this with Google Docs.
10 Examples of Custom Microsoft Excel Tracker Templates we have built for our Clients
We have built hundreds of trackers in Microsoft Excel over the past two decades. From business to healthcare to Human Resources and small business. We even build custom Excel tracker templates for the Microsoft Corporation. No matter the data that you need to track, we have the skills and experience to build you a 100% custom tracker, that does everything that you need and nothing that you don’t.
Look at the 10 examples below, it will give you an idea of what is possible, what trackers look like, etc.
Microsoft Excel Transaction Tracking Template for Healthcare – Latest Demo Application
A new client reached out, they needed an efficient way to receive, track, and to reconcile the payments that their patients made at the front desk. So, we built a custom template with several beautiful Excel Dashboards.
The application is used by the person at the front desk. As each patient comes in, they make their copayment via several available payment methods. They are then given a receipt. This application tracks those payments in addition to allowing the office manager and business owners to quickly reconcile the day’s transactions.
This application is form based, using both Excel UserForms as well as ‘on-tab forms’, for ease of use. The output is a series of Pivot Charts and Pivot Tables, with Slicers. So powerful so easy to use, anyone can run this application, regardless of their Excel skills.
Custom built Excel templates are a powerful and yet affordable business solution. We build them to order.
Microsoft Excel Lead/Client Tracker Template – Example #1
Knowing exactly where your leads come from is a very important topic for most businesses. Client acquisition costs can be high. Knowing which marketing campaigns work best, and which underperform, will allow you to put your money to the best use possible. This is a very common type of Excel tracker that we build, for obvious reasons.
For this lead tracker we used Pivot Tables and Pivot Charts, with Slicers for data analysis efforts. We added several charts to the dashboard as well. The custom dashboard below allows one to quickly see the results of their various marketing campaigns, to make decisions, and to put their marketing budget to best use.
Benefits of using a custom Excel Tracker: Trackers allow you to make more informed business decisions.
This example is one of our most advanced Excel tracking templates, it includes all of the advanced features mentioned in this post. The UserForms drive data entry, and the Pivot Table with Slicers is what drives the data visualization effort. Anyone can use this application, with ease, without having ever worked in Microsoft Excel before. A true point-n-click application.
Ease of use: The Excel UserForm for data entry, the Slicers for Filtering, Pivots for analysis. What could be easier.
The image below is of the Excel dashboard that drives this tracker. Senior Management loves this sort of KPI Analysis.
Excel Invoice Tracker Template for a Small Business – Example #2
This is an example of a pretty simple Invoice Tracker that we built in Excel, with just one tab, to house their list of invoices. Each row of the worksheet is an invoice. In this example only a few basic Excel formulas are used. This was built for a small company that was originally tracking invoices on a pad of paper. They came to use for help, they needed a custom file that was easier to use than their paper copy, but not too fancy. So, we built a very simple and highly affordable custom template in Excel to track their invoices electronically.
This level of simplicity is very common for trackers that are built in-house, by clerical staff. And let me say that there is nothing wrong with having such a simple basic tracker. But while this gets the job done, it could be a lot easier to use and it could do more. It could benefit from adding a few charts and maybe a Pivot Table for data analysis.
Anyhow this is an example of a tracker that any intermediate Excel programmer could build in just a few hours using a few intermediate level Excel functions and a little Excel vba coding.
Timesheet Trackers in Microsoft Excel – Example #3
Timesheet trackers are very common, and we custom build them all the time. They have a very simple use, they allow a person to clock-in and out, and they allow payroll to be calculated. The file is often sent electronically to the payroll department for ease of use.
These are usually built at the intermediate to advanced level. Excel macros are often used as are UserForms. The UserForms provide an easy method for controlled data entry.
The formulas also needed to account for laws on overtime, breaks, and such, as these laws can vary by state. If the file will be used across state lines, then code needs to be written to guarantee the laws are followed.
Overtime Laws: When it comes to payroll, the Excel tracker must account for local, state and federal overtime laws. As such the Excel file needs to know the location of the staff in order to properly calculate payroll.
Example TimeSheet Tracker: Below is an example of a company that reached out for help needing a custom timesheet tracker template. Their need was far from simple. They wanted to have a very robust file, with many features and uses. This is not your typical tracker. As such we built an automated version that would allow the employee to quickly enter the times they clock in or out. A button is then pressed to email a copy of the timesheet to payroll. What could be simpler to use.
Note on Complexity: This tracker is a complicated one, it does so much, this file also has an Email Tracker and Employee Tracker and a Client Tracker built in. This application combines several trackers into one workbook. It also houses related data for other uses, all in one automated and integrated workbook.
Another Example of a Timesheet Tracker: Below is an example of a Time Sheet Tracker a small business was using. They built this inhouse, and as you can see, it is not intuitive nor easy to use. There are three sum formulas used in this file, nothing else. The other numbers are actually being calculated by hand. This tracker could benefit from having additional formulas written as well as a few design changes.
This timesheet tracker shows the benefit of having a custom tracker built. As this file is not user friendly, staff constantly run into problems, and they often enter the wrong numbers. A more advanced, well designed, and locked-down template would better suit their needs. It would also reduce frustration, eliminate errors, and payroll would be timelier.
As you can see, the most basic of trackers are very simple and there is not much to them. This file has three formulas, everything in the file was being manually typed.
Unfortunately, many companies use trackers that are built like this. The cause is simple, they are almost always built by their office staff. Nothing against the persons that build these, as they are not Excel programmers and they did the best they could. This is a perfect example of why a custom solution built by an expert Excel programmer makes sense.
They could benefit from having a custom tracker built, that exactly fits their needs, while also being super easy to use.
Microsoft Excel Sales Tracking Template – Example #4
Successful Businesses like to track sales. Sales trackers come in all shapes and sizes. The Sales tracker below is one we did for a recent client. But it does not look like any sales tracking workbook we have ever created.
Sales Trackers in Microsoft Excel can tell you a lot about your business, but they can also be fun and visually appealing. The term “Data Visualization‘ is very alive in the world of Microsoft Excel programming. Typically, that means Pivot Tables, Pivot Charts, Charts and Graphs, and Conditional Formatting. Being able to quickly and accurately visualize your data, and the tale it is telling is important. Then the important decisions can be made.
The Sales Tracker below takes a fun visual twist, showing the sales results as horses running a race. This was definitely an advanced project as is far more complicated than a single tab invoice tracker.
Microsoft Excel Tracker Templates come in all shapes and sizes, all 100% custom built to your exact needs. If you can imagine it, we can build it, financial modeling in Excel and Access programming are what we do.
Healthcare Multi-Tracker Template – Example #5
When One Tracker is not Enough: This healthcare tracker actually contains 6 sub-trackers, as well as several unique multi-column lists (mini-trackers), and reports. Much more than you would imagine for an Excel tracker, as they typically track one list of like data. So, this is somewhat unique in that there are so many lists being tracked in one Excel workbook.
The original base project was to combine two tracker workbooks into one template (Clinical Tracker and Patient Tracker). But we quickly discovered that they did not have unique trackers for many of the data sources needed for this file, so we had to build those as well, as this is a relational Excel (“database”) workbook. This application was developed to mimic a relational database, such as Microsoft Access, but we built it in Excel as that is what the client preferred. We could not have built this template without the other trackers in the file. It is important to note, that all of the trackers in this file are related, and all are used in the two primary reports.
Excel Programmers Tip: If you are going to create a unique list, it should have a central location for accessibility. Most important, is to make sure that there is only one version of the list being maintained. I have seen numerous times that multiple people will have their own version of the list. The problem should be clear, each person making updates to their personal version of the list, and different lists have different attributes (columns, data points) to track, different methods of updating the file, etc.
Make one unique list, that is housed in one location, and anyone needing that data should have read-only access to it.
For this Healthcare Multi-Tracker, we have the following sub-trackers and mini trackers built into the Master Template.
- Patient Tracker
- Clinical Tracker
- Script Tracker
- Doctor Tracker
- Therapist Tracker
- Case Manager Tracker
- Numerous Lists (Mini-Trackers)
For ease of use, the Patient Tracker uses two Excel UserForms, one for data entry, one for data edits. All of the other Trackers in this file use an on-sheet Excel form to allow rapid, controlled, data entry into the tracker. In addition to making the file easy to use, the UserForms also control what the user can enter, how it is entered, and where it is entered. Maintaining data integrity is always a top priority.
This is the most advanced healthcare tracker we have built to date, as it works like an Access database, Forms included, and for the fact that it houses multiple trackers in one file. A tracker on steroids basically.
The four images below are taken from the unpopulated Healthcare Multi-Tracker Template
If you need a Healthcare Tracking Template, we can build one that is 100% custom to your needs. Simple, ultra-complex, or somewhere in between, all of what you want, nothing you do not want.
Stock Trade Performance Tracker – Example #6
Some of our most advanced Excel programming projects involve workbooks to track trades in an investment account: We have built dozens of Excel workbooks to track investment performance for our clients over the years. Stocks, bonds, mutual funds, options, futures, we have built 100% custom applications to track each trade, to calculate each return. These are definitely the most complicated in terms of calculations and coding. These are almost always fully automated to pull data off of the internet.
I personally programmed a custom tracker in Microsoft Excel and Access back in 1990 to track my daily stock and option trades. I used this when I was an active day trader. We know investments, we know investment trade trackers. My personal trade Tracking application even calculated market risk, based on placed stop orders for each open position.
Simple to use, click the button, your trades are imported, and your profits and loss are calculated.
Our Most Advanced Trading application to date: This year we built an Application in Microsoft Excel that would place your Currency Futures trades for you, and it would track performance. We used minute pricing with dozens of trades being placed per minute. The program would place exit trades based on technical indicators, without human interaction. Basically, we built a robot to place currency trades in real-time. This is the most advanced trading application we have built. This application uses Excel as the front-end with Microsoft Azure as the SQL backend database.
Note: Sometimes when we build a custom Excel application for a client, they will take that file, and they will build their entire business on it. That is what happened with one of our Stock Trade Trackers. The “My Excel Trade Analyzer” was built for a client who later created a business on the back of that tracker.
We built a Stock Trade Tracker named “My Trade Analyzer“, (Later renamed to “My Excel Trade Analyzer”). The Excel based application was built for commercial use by traders across the US. Many US brokerages offered that application to their client base. It worked with their brokerage’s API to download their trade data via vba coding. The file would track their trades, and it would calculate their returns, all with the push of a button.
How to use this Stock Trade Tracker (Video):
Client Testimonial on a custom Excel based Stock Trade Performance Tracker:
HIPAA / Human Resource Trackers – Example #7
Trackers are often used in Human Resources, and around HIPAA. We have worked with a lot of health care companies and with a lot of HR Departments. Given the sensitivity of the data, in both cases, special care goes into data security. The use of Excel VBA enables us to determine exactly who has access to the file and to the confidential data.
Dates are one thing that are of importance in these types of trackers, as you usually want to be notified before a date has been passed, not after. With the use of formulas and Conditional Formatting, we are able to instantly notify the user of what is about to expire, giving plenty of notice to take corrective action, before a date is missed.
In more advanced versions of HIPAA and HR Trackers code is often used to electronically notify employees of important dates, certification requirements, etc. These electronic notifications are sent by the tracker via Excel vba coding.
Special Note: The tracker also records when the communication was sent, and what the message was. Add the ability for the application to automatically print lists of employees’ records that need to be looked at, and you can see how beneficial these are to business. The tracker does most of the work for you. What could be easier to use?
A custom Microsoft Excel Tracker Template with basic Conditional Formatting will prevent you from missing important certification requirements. Don’t go past due based on oversight.
Microsoft Excel Certification Trackers – Example #8
For some industries timely certification is a ongoing challenge, and a constant concern. Missing dates can be costly. Just keeping up with the certification process and paperwork can be difficult. Keeping track of the certification dates can be an even bigger challenge, especially for larger businesses.
Missing certification deadlines can be costly, embarrassing, and it can cause certification issues. This is exactly why Excel based trackers are used; to avoid going past due.
So how do you not miss important certification dates? Simplest way is to build a basic template to track the list of items that require certification, along with their certification date.
Not much is needed, the item, the date, number of days’ notice you want, etc. In the simplest form of these, one tab should do the trick. One tab, maybe a few formulas, and some conditional formatting. For more advanced versions, as some vba, automate notifications, integrate with Microsoft Outlook, Pivot Tables if needed.
Avoid Past Due or Expired: Tracker file with Conditional Formatting and a few basic formulas should prevent you from missing pending certification dates. These are some of the most common reasons for building a tracker in the first place; to track items that are about to go past due, prior to going past due.
Simple Client Trackers in Microsoft Excel – Example #9
Most companies have a list of clients that they track. Some do it in their accounting package, some do it in a custom Microsoft Excel Tracker.
Many companies track clients in programs such as QuickBooks as that is where there most complete list of clients usually is maintained. Other companies may have a custom tracker built in a Microsoft Excel template, such as the one in the image below.
Larger companies Excel templates are often large integrated trackers that do many things, in addition to tracking the basic list of clients. Bigger companies tend to use a lot more automation in their trackers, mainly for ease of use, and they tend to track more types of data in a single application. Having all of that data in a single application makes updating, reporting and analysis much easier.
Small businesses tend to use a lot of individual trackers, and most of them tend to be relatively simple. Client and Sales Trackers are very popular for small business. They are usually built by one of the office staff, maybe someone in accounting. Unfortunately, they are not always built as well as they could be, and they usually do not do very much. But with that said, for smaller businesses the trackers need not be complicated. They should be super quick and easy to build, while still being user friendly.
Our Custom Microsoft Excel Tracker Templates for Business: The most basic and simplest of client trackers when built with the right design, using protection features, simple formulas, and a little vba, these should work flawlessly, and not be more than a few tabs in the workbook. They are after all just an electronic list of like items. See image below.
Microsoft Excel 2013 Tracker Templates for Microsoft – Example #10
Many people do not know this, but the Microsoft Corporation has dozens of free, pre-built templates in Microsoft Excel for the taking. Many of these free templates are tracker type workbooks. Most of the workbooks on offer are very simple, not too much to them, just what is needed. They are free to download from the Microsoft website, and they are installed in Microsoft Excel on your PC or laptop. Microsoft has some very nice templates, and we recommend that you take a look at them. Our firm, Excel and Access LLC built many of those for Microsoft.
As with all of the shelf templates, they tend to do more than you need, and not all that you need. So some customization is still needed. But if you are looking for a quick tracker for, say sales, I would first look to see what Microsoft has to offer. If you cannot find one that fits your needs, or if you want to have it customized, please reach out to us, and one of our expert Excel programmers can build the custom Excel tracker you need for your business.
Interesting note, each of these templates had several different departments working on them, from the Excel programmer (us), graphic design, marketing, and project management. Microsoft put a lot of work and effort into each of the templates they offer, we highly recommend that you check them out – they are free.
The Microsoft Corporation did a special project with us in 2013, where two of our top Microsoft Excel MVP’s worked with the Microsoft Corporation to create dozens of Excel templates to be included in Excel 2013. We created about 65% of those custom templates for Microsoft.
Many of the templates we created for Microsoft were advanced tracking spreadsheets that were designed for business use.
An Example of how an Advanced Tracking Template works
So you have read about trackers, what they do, how they are used, what they record, but if you have never used a tracker, what is written below will give you an idea of just how user friendly these are and what they can do for you.
Steps to update an automated Microsoft Excel tracker workbooks:
- Open the Excel workbook.
- A UserForm opens.
- Key your data into the form
- A UserForm opens.
- Press the Append Record button on the UserForm
- The record is appended to the Data Table
- The Pivot Table is automatically updated
- The Pivot Charts are updated
- The Interactive Charts and Graphs are updated
- Copies of your charts are printed
- An E-Mail notification is sent to the appropriate people
- Charts and such are attached
- A copy of the file is archived
- A printout of items that you need to address has been printed
- You close the file
- Your work is done, the tracker has been updated
If you leverage the power of VBA, what you can do with a custom Microsoft Excel trackers would amaze you.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Can you buy off the shelf trackers built in Microsoft Excel?
Yes, you can buy all sorts of pre-built, canned off the shelf applications for Excel, Word, and Access, such as Invoice or budgeting programs for personal or business. As you would expect, they rarely do exactly what you need to have done and they usually do far more than you want. You can buy them and they might get the job done, but they are not exactly what you are looking for.
Our firm, Excel and Access, LLC has been building 100% custom Excel tracking templates for business since 2003. We can easily build one 100% to your needs, at an affordable rate.
How complicated does a tracking template in Excel need to be?
Not complicated at all; it can simply be a list one column wide. How the complexity is determined is very simple, your needs determine what the file is able to do, and how complicated the building of the file is. For example, if you want Pivot Charts built on Pivot Tables, so you can instantly see KPI performance, then it will be more complicated to build, but just as easy to use.
Can you expand on our custom-built Microsoft Excel tracker as your business changes?
Yes, absolutely, just as you can with any Excel application. If you need to add a new KPI, we will insert a column. If you need to pull the data from Access instead of Excel, we can make that change for you. If you want to add a UserForm to ease data entry, we can build that for you. 80% of the companies that hire us make changes to the file after we deliver it. It comes with the territory, over time, companies change the structure of their workbook.
What is usually included in our Microsoft Excel tracker Templates
It depends on your needs, but usually they include a tab for the data, some sort of interface to enter your data, and then you may have charts, graphs, Pivot Tables with Pivot Charts, some conditional formatting, and a few macros. That is the most standard format. But it all depends on your exact needs.
We offer free consultations, so we can discuss your exact needs in detail. We can show you examples of work for other clients, so you can see what is possible, what you might not thought of, and what might work best for you.
How can we help you when it comes to your Excel tracking template workbooks?
- If you already have a spreadsheet, you are currently using to track items of interest, we can either upgrade the file for you, or we may use it to create a new custom Microsoft Excel Trackers template.
- If you are currently using Word, Google Docs, or even a pad of paper to track items on your list, we can build you a new and 100% custom tracker workbook template in Microsoft Excel that does everything that you need.
- If you want to build your own Excel tracker, or if you want to be taught how to make changes to one, we offer one-one-one Excel programmer training on a remote basis. We can teach you the Excel programming skills you need and then you can build the application of your dreams.
- We are here to help. Give us a call or shoot us an email.
The Excel program works perfectly. I’ve tested it several times with no issues. The progress indicator you added is awesome. It’s better than I had envisioned. I’ve enjoyed working with the entire Excel & Access Experts Team. The entire process was a great experience.