How to use Excel : Excel Basics – Tell me more feature in Excel 2016

Introduction :

Microsoft has come up with some really cool features in its Excel 2016 release. We'll be discussing some really helpful new features of Excel 2016 like enhanced pivot table, forecasting, waterfall charts etc. as we move on in the course, but right now, at this point in the course, we'll be discussing one great new addition to Excel 2016 which is helpful even to the beginners. This is the new help feature of Excel 2016 and is called the "Tell me what you want to do" Textbox. So lets dive further into this feature and have a look on how to use it.

"Tell me what you want to do" feature in Excel 2016

The “Tell me” help is a new and very appreciable feature of Excel 2016.

This is a text box located to the immediate right of the Ribbon tabs. The text in this help box reads “Tell me what you want to do …” and displays a list of Excel commands in a dropdown list as soon as we start typing for help in the text box.

Tell Me More feature in Excel 2016

The list of Excel commands displayed are related to whatever we enter in the help box. E.g. if we enter “Format” in the text box it will show a list of commands like Number Format, Format Cells, Format as table etc. We can now choose from the list the option that suits our needs.

Tell Me More feature in Excel 2016

The uniqueness of this Excel 2016 feature that distinguishes it from the help options in older versions is the fact that this feature actually performs the task that we are looking for and not just tells the method to perform it. E.g. If we want to open the “Format cells” dialog box but do not know the exact path to do this, we can just type “Format” in the Tell Me help text box and click on the Format cells option present in the list. This will automatically open the Format Cells dialog box. In this way we can execute any ribbon command no matter which ribbon tab is currently active.

Tell Me More feature in Excel 2016

The Tell me Help also lets us access the online help. Below the commands list that appear as we type something for help, there is a “Get Help” option. Click on this option to access the online help on the related topic. For example when we type Format in the text box, we get to see the option “Get Help on Format”. On clicking this option Excel shows us the online results on Format.

Tell Me More feature in Excel 2016

Conclusion :

This Help feature of Excel 2016 can be great help to learners as they can explore a lot of new things from this single textbox, at the same time it can assist experienced Excel users as well, because there are times when we forget the exact usage of some feature that we have not used for some time. The "Tell me" help text box helps us in recalling such features.