Data from a table that’s arranged in rows and columns can easily be moved into an Excel spreadsheet.

Within Excel, it can then be edited, arranged and sorted. Sometimes the tables are recognizable, such as the one below that includes gridlines.

Read: Save money, dazzle clients with Excel

Word table

At other times, the format is embedded like in the one below that was taken from a web page.

web table

Wherever you find the table, drag your cursor from the top left of the table to the bottom right until the entire item is highlighted. Then press Ctrl + c to copy it. Second, open Excel and select cell A1 in the top left corner and press Ctrl + v to paste it.

Excel table

Each cell of data should go into a corresponding cell on the spreadsheet, giving you the freedom to adjust the row height and column width for optimal viewing. Do this by dragging the gridlines both up and down and side to side.

When you are setting the height of the first row you’ll be able to see the height changing as you make adjustments. Ensure you take note of the final height measurement so you can adjust all rows to the same height at once by following these steps:

  1. Click the box to the left of the letter A in the column markers and above the number 1 in the row markers to highlight all rows.
  2. Right-click one of the row numbers and select row height. Enter the desired row height and click okay.

finished table

This method will work for tables that are tab-delimited text files. You can also try right clicking the text file and selecting open with>Microsoft Office Excel.

Read: Tech every advisor needs: Part 1 (3-part series), which features Excel in the 3rd installment

David Dagley, CFP®, is a software developer and Adobe javascript expert, with 15 years of financial planning experience. He is the owner and president of Forms Doctor Inc., a company specializing in workflow automation solutions and financial planning calculators for investment dealers, financial advisors, and investment firms.
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