A Guide On VBA Excel: Meaning, Uses, Benefits And Key Terms

Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 16 September 2022

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A spreadsheet in Excel can automatically input data, calculate and analyse it, making it a useful in the workplace. If managing and using data is an essential part of your job, working knowledge of Microsoft Excel may often be a necessity for performing a variety of routine tasks. Learning about Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) can benefit you regardless of whether you work in technology or simply want to advance your Excel skills.

In this article, we describe VBA Excel, share its uses, list where you can use it, discuss its advantages and provide a few key terminologies for your better understanding.

What Is VBA Excel?

Visual Basic for Applications or VBA Excel refers to the internal coding language used by Microsoft for Excel and other Microsoft Office products like Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access, Publisher and Visio. VBA allows users to modify Office applications to suit their business requirements and streamline apps for managing work-related responsibilities. You can use VBA for the creation of codes, the automation of tedious processes and the modification of user interface (UI) elements.

Users can reduce the time and labour required to perform certain actions by instructing VBA to trigger functions automatically. Essentially, VBA gives users the ability to easily and effectively work on and manage documents, spreadsheets, presentations and other programs.

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Uses Of VBA In Excel

Excel VBA allows users to customise the Excel application for specific business requirements. The following are some reasons for using this tool:

Prompt users to execute specific actions

You might utilise VBA to provide prompts to users that either encourage or demand specific activities. Using VBA might prove valuable when business executives want customers to interact with a page in a certain way. When a page loads, for instance, you may want people to enter information like their full names or banking information. Likewise, you might want them to save the sheet to a certain company drive or folder. These kinds of security measures are crucial for firms that save proprietary or confidential information in Microsoft files because they allow executives to protect data.

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Transfer data between Office applications

Many professionals may frequently require transferring substantial volumes of data across Microsoft Office programs. They might want to transform Excel spreadsheet data into a convincing PowerPoint presentation, for instance. They might also want to convert an Outlook contact list into a Word document or transfer data from a Word document to the Publisher. VBA enables you to move data between systems and edit information based on the original versions. Compared to the copy and paste technique, data transfer using VBA can be simpler, faster and more accurate.

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Automating processes

One of the most popular reasons to use VBA in Office applications is the ability to construct programs that automate repetitive processes. Users can work productively and manage their time efficiently with this tool to perform a wide variety of tasks. These may include preparing reports and presentations with suitable formatting for senior executives, deleting data tables in Word and importing contacts into an Excel spreadsheet from Outlook. You can also modify the text style in Word, update tables or other material pasted from another page and implement the same changes across several Outlook contacts.

You can employ user-written macros, which are scripts or collections of instructions that process data systematically to automate repetitive operations. Macros can be quite useful when employing relative references, variables and smart processes. Users can generate macros by documenting their workflow and preserving it. After the computer precisely duplicates the user's inputs, users can click a button to start the same procedure.

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Utilising an alternative technique

People may choose to employ Excel VBA as the ideal option for accomplishing their objectives. It can also be an excellent idea to determine whether any standard Excel techniques can help you achieve your targets more easily before deciding to create and execute coding using Excel VBA.

You may conclude that Excel VBA is a sensible option for your goals after learning about and testing the built-in capabilities and features that Microsoft Excel can provide users. If you choose to employ it, ensure that you practise programming in VBA rigorously and meticulously, so you can ensure the security of the company's data.

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Where Can You Use A VBA?

You can find, access and use the VBA window for your Office apps in several ways. To start, press 'Alt' and 'F11' on your keyboard while Excel or another Office program is active. This opens the VBA window, which includes the following sections:

  • Coding section: You can find it in the top-right and centre sections of your VBA window. You might use this section to create, code and save macros.

  • File structure tree: You can locate this section in the top-left corner of your VBA window. You can create a new macro file in the file structure tree.

  • Properties section: This section is accessible in the bottom-left corner of your VBA window. This enables users to construct graphical interfaces for macros in the properties section.

You may access the VBA window in Excel by adding the 'Developer' tab to your ribbon. Open the Excel software to get started. In your window, choose 'File', then press 'Options' and finally select 'Customise ribbon'. You can then choose the 'Developer' box by going to the 'Main tabs' drop-down menu. You can select the developer tab at the top after selecting 'OK' and when you return to your Excel window. The VBA editor window opens when you choose the 'Visual Basic' option.

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Advantages Of Adding A VBA Button In Excel

There are many benefits of using VBA in Excel. Users can rapidly execute spreadsheet macros, also known as VBA code, by adding a VBA button to an Excel spreadsheet. In addition, this can make the database more accessible to individuals who might not be familiar with the 'Developer' tab or VBA tools. The ability to customise VBA buttons enables spreadsheet designers to instruct and advise users on how to use VBA processes.

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Key Terms Of VBA Excel

As Excel is a program with many capabilities and VBA is its internal coding language, it might be beneficial to understand certain terms associated with these subjects to enhance your technical knowledge. Following is a list of essential terms, along with a brief description you may find useful:

  • Objects: Objects, also known as classes, are entities made of code and include attributes, methods and the ability to execute commands and complete operations. The Excel program itself, workbooks, worksheets, sheets, charts, cell ranges and shapes are examples of objects.

  • Procedures: A procedure, which is another word for macros, is a block of code that performs an action. They can be a collection of handwritten code statements or recordings of user commands made up of subroutines and functions.

  • MsgBox: The message box or MsgBox dialogue box in VBA allows you to notify users of your code or program. This can be an excellent tool for encouraging or requiring users to take specific actions and communicate specific messages.

  • Logical operators: In a programming language, logical operators are symbols, words or lines of code that signify operations and actions based on established circumstances. Common logical operators often include 'or', 'not' 'and', 'true' and 'false', besides 'if, then' statements.

  • Variables: Variables are specific numbers, letters, or places in a computer's memory or storage software. Variables and arrays, which are collections of variables, comprise the data used in VBA procedures and functions.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are associated with Indeed.

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