The Relevance of Advanced Excel in Retail and Corporate Banking

A new wave of disruption which is more extensive and more powerful than, that was seen in the earlier decade is likely to be unfolded in this Decade. Technological, Economic, Geopolitical, demographic and environmental factors are termed as the main factors for most of the disruptions and they will remain same in this Digital Era also. But then again, the distinctive convergence of these factors would unleash a revolutionary change in the economy at a broader sense which in-turn will also have a consecutive impact on banking sector.

Banking is all about numbers related to financial transactions. Banking Industry itself has evolved around profiting the Business from such financial transactions.

Finding or creating opportunities is something like finding a needle in a haystack. Long back there was a euphemism for wasting time in creating opportunities. Though, this Digital era has made such work easier, selecting and applying the right tool is more vital.

Today let me enlighten you about one of those right tools i.e. Advanced Excel.

1. What is Spreadsheet?

Spreadsheet usually referred to Excel is a featured program that is used for Generating Tables and charts, Calculations, Graphing tools, etc.

Microsoft excel, so for, is the most influential and widely accepted analytical tool which is used, by many commercial banks, especially in the ever evolving regulatory and market landscape.

2. Basic Excel v/s Intermediate Excel v/s Advanced Excel

I will try to categorize and differentiate these levels at a very basic level.

Let’s say if you are using the excel only for the arithmetic calculations and some other basic formulae/functions, together all these makes you fall under Basic Excel Category.

Eg: Sum, Average, Max, Min and Count – Filters, Formatting etc.

If you have good command over some text and other related functions, you come under Intermediate Excel categogry.

Eg: Excel with text, Search and lookup formulae, If and Nested conditions -Data Validation, Pivot Table/Charts, Advanced Filters , and finally,

If you have command over formulae with multi dimension combinations, then you will be at an Advanced Level.

Eg: Macros and Dashboards

3. Benefiting for the Bankers?

Let us understand how Excel will be helpful to bankers. Banks have adopted Excel as a formula – analytical tool in every aspect of its Operations, it might be a simple or complex business event. Let me share some insights on various roles at banks, which make use of excel in their banking activities:

Cashier: A Cashier uses Excel for the basic summation needed at the end the day on a daily basis and he also uses it to know about the Inventory position. A cashier is always thrown at huge risk of misappropriated cash balances and he will be personally liable for any deviations incurred. Excel will reduce the risk levels to a great extent.

Other Tellers: Tracking the payments made on loans, Sending reminders by using functions, such as DATE, and EDATE. Maturity dates on certificates of deposits can also be tracked using Excel Functions.

Assistant Manager/Manager: Activities like sending frequented Due Reminders, Reporting Purpose NPA classification etc., can be done by taking the help of If and Nested If Functions of Excl.

Excel has another powerful tool for a banker known as PMT, this function informs the borrowers about their potential loan scenarios and the effect and cost of eliminating their refinancing risk.

Bulk NEFT/RTGS : Apart from using different application tools such as HRMS, Core Banking etc, Bankers insist the Data either Input or Output to be in Excel format for the sake of statutory audit purposes.

Problems that can be resolved using the help of excel , especially in Banking are as:

  • Due date Remainders
  • Customers SMA Classification
  • Generating Reports
  • Data Entry and Automation
  • Client Support
  • Cluster wise Sales
  • Analysing the Data received from various applications etc.

Some of the most commonly used Excel functions or Features:

  • Data Functions -like Date, Edate
  • Conditional Formatting Function
  • Vlook up , Hlook Up
  • IF and Nested IF Function
  • Payment Functions – Like PMT
  • Net Present Value Function
  • Weighted Average Life Function
  • Basic Arithmetic Calculation like = Sum (C3:C23)

Learning and practicing excel would be an essential skill for a Banker. This increases his potentiality and calibre to handle day to day activities, in an easier manner, increased efficiency and all such tasks can be a completed in less stipulated time. A well trained and efficient banker with a sound knowledge on Advanced Excel will always add value to his career and also does enhance the organisational value at large.

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