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Which Granny Flat is a Better Investment?

A Real-Life Granny Flat Construction Scenario

learn excel online training courseChoosing between a one-bedroom and two-bedroom granny flat is a decision you’ll need to make early on in the project, and it’s largely a financial one.

EzyLearn’s Microsoft Excel Training Course includes a new case study, “Investing in a Granny Flat”, which uses the construction of a granny flat as a real life example to help you to better understand how to develop a financial forecast for an investment.

Determine construction and ancillary costs

How much it will cost to construct both a one-bedroom and two-bedroom granny flat is the first step. You need to work out how much it will cost to get each granny flat constructed to the point that someone can move in, as well as any ancillary costs, like council fees and levies, real estate management fees interest rates and so forth.

Determine rental income

Some granny flat companies will give you rental income estimates, but you’re encouraged to investigate this yourself. Rental incomes are heavily dependent on your local area and the demand for that type of property. In Sydney, the demand for rental property far outweighs the demand in regional NSW. Take into consideration vacancy rates in the area and the types of property that are in demand. Areas with high vacancy rates and low demand for one-bedroom units could indicate there’s little demand for a permanently rented one-bedroom granny flat, which will put the rent down.

Determine depreciation amounts

Both granny flats will be subject to the same depreciation rate, however the amounts will differ due to the differing value of each dwelling. In addition to an annual depreciation rate on the dwelling, consider other elements of the granny flat that will also be subject to depreciation. Floor coverings, for example, can be depreciated over time. Carpeting is typically depreciated at a rate of 20 percent, where tiles are depreciated at 2.5 percent because the latter has a longer lifespan.

Determine the best investment

Add all of these costs into Excel to determine the average annual rental yield, expressed as a percentage of the property value. Rental yields are used to show the return on an investment. The higher the rental yield, the better the return is. Taken in combination with your own personal circumstances and plans for the future should help you to determine which option represents the better investment.


Our Microsoft Excel training courses, featuring the new granny flat case study, go into much greater detail. Or view our full suite of training courses. 


learn excel online training course

At EzyLearn, we’re committed to helping students of all our courses find better employment opportunities, become their own boss and upskill. To this end, we constantly update our courses with new, highly relevant content — it’s why we provide you with the option of Lifetime access you can always refer back to our courses as you progress in your skills’ development. 

We’re thrilled to announce our new Micro Courses which are be added to our existing courses, or can be purchased alone. These are based on real-life case studies and relate to real people in genuine, real-life scenarios. Subscribe to our blog and be alerted of updates.


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Calculating PAYG Obligations Without a Payroll System

Third Quarter is Looming; Are You Up to Date with Payroll?

ad hoc payroll payments ExcelMost businesses using an accounting program like MYOB or Xero will use the included payroll package to manage their employees’ payroll. For businesses with only a few employees, however, the additional payroll function is an unnecessary expense.

In our recently updated Advanced Microsoft Excel training courses, we have included a micro course on ‘Ad Hoc Payroll’, featuring a detailed spreadsheet for calculating PAYG and superannuation obligations. In this instance, our micro course is a detailed spreadsheet based on a case study, so it’s relevant and applicable to real life.

PAYG and the businesses it applies to

Every Australian business with employees who are each paid more than the tax-free threshold has a legal obligation to withhold tax on their employees’ behalf. This is known as the PAYG System (or Pay As You Go), where amounts of tax are withheld from each employee’s wage payments.

Businesses that withhold up to $25,000 each year only need to make payments to the ATO each quarter; businesses withholding amounts greater than $25,001 may have to make payments to the ATO each month or as regularly as each week.

At the time of writing, the tax-free threshold is currently $18,200, which is equivalent to:

  • $350 a week
  • $700 a fortnight
  • $1,517 a month

Superannuation contributions

Again, any business that pays its employees more than $450 each month must also make regular superannuation contributions on their employees’ behalf. We’ve written in the past about the government’s clearing house called SuperStream, which allows you to easily make super contributions — for free.

But first, you need to work out how much super you need to contribute for your employees. The superannuation guarantee is currently 9.5 percent of your employees’ gross wages, which is payable on top of their wages — not deducted out of.

Using tax tables to calculate wages

Each year, the ATO produces a range of tax tables to help you work out how much to withhold from payments you make to your employees. In our Ad Hoc Payroll Micro Course, we’ve already added the most current tax tables to the accompanying payroll spreadsheet, as well as the superannuation guarantee tables.


We feature a number of real-life case studies, which we have turned into micro courses. You can use the Ad Hoc Payroll Micro Course to determine the rate of PAYG tax to withhold and the required super contribution amounts in Excel, rather than paying to access the payroll functions of MYOB or Xero. Our Intermediate Microsoft Excel training courses will also teach you how to create a payroll spreadsheet from scratch to suit your own business. Visit our website for more information on all of our Excel training courses.


online bookkeeping courses to earn cpd points


EzyLearn Excel, MYOB and Xero online training courses count towards Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for bookkeepers and accountants. We’ve been an accredited training provider of the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers ever since the organisation started in Australia. Find out how CPD points can be of benefit to you.






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How does $20,000 mortgage repayments equate to $47,598.02?

Microsoft Excel Course now includes a mortgage spreadsheet

Microsoft Excel Training Course can help you halve your mortgageA mortgage for your home is a huge debt, particularly for those living in the swelling capital cities with soaring house prices. The pro and cons of buying your own house and living in it are:

  • You don’t pay capital gains tax on a property you live in, but
  • You can’t claim the interest component of your loan

The big problem with this is the interest charge – you can’t claim the cost of it yet it’s a massive component of each and every payment you make on your mortgage. You’d need your house price to go up at least at the interest rate you are paying to make it a good investment – and right now you’d be doing fine (perhaps except in Perth now).

Bigger payments reduce the interest paid

Our Microsoft Excel Training Course now includes an Excel spreadsheet file that will help you see just how much money you’d save if you paid even a small amount off extra each month!

You can use the mortgage comparison file to compare two mortgages, make extra payments or even shorten the term of the loan to see how much you’d need to pay each month if you want to pay your mortgage off quicker.

If you are an existing Excel Course student you’ll find the new file at the end of our Microsoft Excel Advanced Course 309.

Take 10 years off your mortgage while its easy to

I don’t want to turn this into a financial education blog, but there are several reasons to open this spreadsheet and start seeing the resulting figures to workout the best way to allocate the money you earn. Interest rates are at record lows, house prices ‘may’ be peaking, some people say that Australian banks are so highly leveraged to the residential property market that they’ll need to hold more capital reserves.

Either way you look at it, why not use your Microsoft Excel skills and play with some calculations to see how much better off you could be if you are financially prudent now. You can also use this Microsoft Excel file to do a stress test and see how much your mortgage would be if interest rates do go up as many people expect they will.

free online training course in Xero or Microsoft Word with MYOB or Microsoft Excel CourseFree Microsoft Word Course (or Xero Accounting) when you enrol in Excel Certificate Course

Note that if you enrol into Microsoft Excel Courses and choose the certificate option you’ll receive a BONUS course in either Microsoft Word (to create a professional resume) or Xero Accounting! Read our BONUS course offer announcement.

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Beginners to Advanced Microsoft Excel Course for $197 inc Exercise Files

$197 Beginners to Advanced Microsoft Excel Course includes Exercise Files

Microsoft Excel Training Course exercise files

One of the best ways of learning how to use a program is to use that program during your training. Some people can sit with programs like Microsoft Excel and learn by trying something out and making mistakes and then trying again.

[box type=”tick”]We’ve discovered that Microsoft Excel course students want to work with real world files in a logical step-by-step method that uses the exercise files for the basic skills and then keep using that file for the more advanced skills.[/box]

By the end you’ll have a powerful Microsoft Excel spreadsheet using advanced skills and because you learnt in a logical and methodical way, using gradually more complicated tools, you’ll have learnt most of the Microsoft Excel skills you’ve wanted and won’t even notice the time go by.

Real World Use of Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets

Excel training course exercise filesThe main uses for Microsoft Excel are as a:

  • Worksheet that enables you to lay out information in a logical fashion and then perform calculations with that data
  • Database that lists all of the information in a tabular format that can then be filtered and manipulated into a format that can be used in mail merges etc, and
  • Charts and graphs that visually present the information in a worksheet or table so that we humans can make sense of the information

Here are some of the ways that we use Microsoft Excel for our training business.

Present information for use in newspaper ads

In Microsoft Excel Course 303 we look at formulas and formatting and one exercise file we share with students and an example of what’s possible using Excel is the artwork we created for the newspaper ads for our courses at our training centres in Sydney. The table structure of Excel enables us to lay the information out precisely and if we need to change the dates

What costs us the most money

Yes, you can see the costs of running a business in a simple table, but when you put it in a chart you can visually see the differences in costs and in our 305 course on charting we’ll show you how to create the various different types of pie, line and bar charts as well as many other types. You’ll learn how to format the charts to make certain areas stand out and you’ll learn how to demonstrate trends.

Budgets and forecasting

It’s great when you have historical information to work with because you can spend a lot of time working out percentages, margins, budgets etc to try to figure out how you will go in the future. We include many exercise files in Microsoft Excel Course 306, including files to help you:

  • Maintain a household (or business budget)
  • Calculate sales margins and commissions for sales people (we have several different versions of this file to demonstrate how the file should look at the various stages of creating it).
  • Create a price list (including all wholesale product costings – that will be hidden from view)

 Making the right decisions

When we operated our training centres in Sydney we spent a lot of our time scheduling courses. We had to allocate training rooms, roster on our great trainers, print training materials and we needed to know when people where coming to courses. We discovered that most people who wanted to learn Microsoft Excel did a night class. We had these variables to work with:

  • The courses
  • What days people had come to these courses in the past
  • The time of the day that students had enrolled into these courses: morning, midday, evening or weekend.
  • Different training methods (class-based and Flexible Learning)

By discovering the best days and times that students had enrolled into courses from the past we were able to better schedule our courses to get the most students. It means we didn’t need to cancel courses.

See the contents of Microsoft Excel Course 308 for more information.

Figure out how to make more profit

In a business you can build a bigger business and make more profit by

  • increasing sales,
  • cutting costs,
  • focussing on your most profitable customers,
  • focussing on your most profitable products,
  • decreasing the time it takes to get your money (cash sale or terms).

Using Goal Seek in Microsoft Excel we discovered something that’ll help all independent contractors run a better more profitable business.


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Did I Mention a Free Excel Beginners Course?

Free Excel Beginners Course

I recently wrote about our Microsoft Excel [link]  Training Courses and how they have the features that make all of our online training courses popular, but I forgot to mention that we make the Excel Beginners Course available for free. These free training videos AND Excel Course workbook will give you the confidence to understand the main uses for Microsoft Excel.

Microsoft Excel can be used for lots of different things, but the main uses are:

  • Worksheet (to do calculations)
  • Chart (to visually show the data)
  • Database (to store data)

Our Excel Beginners Course videos will give you the basic Microsoft Excel knowledge very quickly, but the Excel Beginners Course workbook and exercise files will give you the chance to replicate what you see in the videos and LEARN BY DOING. You’ll get the training workbook to print out and we’ll also send you the excel files that we use in our demonstrations.

Excel Intermediate to Advanced Courses

Don’t worry, once you master the basics you’ll either want to know as much as you can about Microsoft Excel or decide that you’ll just use the software when you need it.  Either way, with our LIFETIME course access option you can complete and repeat the course as often as you want and with all skills levels (from Beginners to Advanced Excel) you’ll be covered.

We’ve been teaching people how to use Microsoft Excel since we started at Lane Cove in Sydney in 1996 and we look forward to helping more people learn Excel to become more productive, more employable and more successful.

Make sure you share our free Excel Beginners Courses with your friends on social media.

[button link=””]FREE Excel Beginners Course[/button]    [button link=”” bg_color=”#99050c”]Enrol Now[/button]

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Forecast a Positive Future Using Microsoft Excel

Time to Reflect, Thank and Plan

sales-forecasting-using-microsoft-excel-training-courseWe had our office Christmas party (for our Sydney team) this week and I went through and individually thanked each of my team for their contribution during the year. I’m very lucky to be working with a great bunch of people – although, you know what they say:”The harder I work the luckier I get” – and I used our Christmas lunch to thank each of them publicly (in front of their peers) for their efforts because I think it’s important.

We started a lot of diverse and interesting projects during the year and they include:

  1. Assembling a course to teach people how to create their own course – ideal for sites that want to create their own online Inductions for contractors,
  2. Worked with the Australian Small Business Centre to create new sales and marketing courses for their Business Management Course.
  3. Created a MYOB Bookkeeper Directory to help our students start their own bookkeeping business and find new clients
  4. Established the StartUp Academy to help ordinary people start their own business working from home

Treat Yourself as you Plan for Success in 2015

Sales forecasting using Microsoft Excel Training Courses and MYOB DataOne of our team members said she’s going on holidays and really needs the time off because she will be studying VERY hard next year. She’ll have 5 weeks off and she’s 21. I started to wonder if I am a workaholic, am a little twisted in my opinion of what makes a good holiday or that I just love what I am doing, but I offered to give her work to do while she was on holidays overseas for that long period of time – after all, isn’t it great to earn some money working from your computer, using the internet for a couple hours each day and then getting into the festivities!?

I was thinking about my ideal holiday – work a couple hours every morning (early if possible so no one is awake to distract me), then feel rewarded and REALLY enjoy the rest of the day and night. It gives me the feeling of still being connected to the world at home, while achieving something workwise and then cutting off completely from work for the rest of the day.

When I think about the festive season and the quiet time between Christmas and when most people come back to work (5th January 2015 or later) I see an opportunity to stay in Sydney where it almost becomes a pleasure to drive on the roads and spend the time in thought and contemplation to plan for the coming year. It’s usually the time when I write down my major goals for the coming year and start to clearly define them, how they’ll look and operate and what is needed to achieve them. It’s the time when I end up getting on my computer and powering up Microsoft Excel to do those once a year checks on the past and forecasts for the future.

Microsoft Excel Course for Financial Forecasting

Export Sales Report information from MYOB AccountRight to Microsoft Excel
Export Sales Report information from MYOB AccountRight to Microsoft Excel

Forecasts are those interesting things that investments are based on. Someone with a spreadsheet and a business plan will guess how much they’ll earn in the forthcoming year/quarter/month etc and back it up with all their evidence in the business plan. To many people it’s a waste of time because “who can really predict the future”, but to those people who do it it’s a way of crystalising your plans into monthly or quarterly objectives that are based on the past (in most cases) and on intelligent estimates of what the market needs.

Export Your MYOB Reports

If you already use MYOB Accounting Software to manage your bookkeeping and accounts you can easily export a report about last periods sales and use that as a basis for next years forecasts. Many slight changes can result in more sales and higher profits in 2015, including:

  • new products,
  • expanded services or
  • price increases

But your decision to no longer provide 30 days credit terms or be more diligent with late payers can help you earn your money twice as fast. Either way you do it, now is a great time to export that data from MYOB, or Xero or Quickbooks and get it into a spreadsheet (worksheet) so you can start to do some mathematics to show how much more you’ll earn in 2015.

Online Microsoft Excel Training Courses

If you’ve followed our blog posts you’d know that we have a very popular MYOB training course. I wanted you to know that we have a popular Excel Training Course too and it comes with the same benefits as most of our online courses:

  • 12 months or LIFETIME Excel Course access
  • Assessment and Certificate Option
  • Includes 9 skill levels from Excel Beginners to Advanced
  • Includes exercise files to practice
  • Includes multiple version of the Microsoft Excel Software
  • Each of the 9 courses includes an Excel Training Workbook with step-by-step exercises
  • Comes with a 30 day money back guarantee


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Feedback from Students About Our Online Training Courses

We value - and need - your feedback about our online training courses.
We value – and need – your feedback about our online training courses.

Over the years, we’ve provided online training to numerous Australian – and international – students, whether via our flagship MYOB training course or one of our Excel or WordPress courses, or our more recent Small Business Management Course. Over the years these students have provided us with valuable feedback.

The feedback we receive from our students helps us to understand what’s working and what isn’t, which is why it’s invaluable to us that you get in touch and let us know what you think.

It was based on the feedback we received from our students that we decided to develop our Reach Accounting and Xero training courses. It is also based on the feedback we received that we changed the way we issued our certificates so that students received them faster and could use them to find work.

Recent Feedback

Here’s just some of the feedback we’ve received from our students recently:

“I found the workbooks the most helpful for giving practical experience.” — Karen Dimitri, Glengowrie SA 5044

“The best part is that you can do it on your own time and pace.” — Juliana van Wyk, Hilton WA 6163

“Short, easily digestable videos. Can fit in easily with a busy lifestyle.” — Korina Power, North Shore, Auckland 0630

“I could learn at my own pace.” — Jackie Smith, Sheidow Park, SA 5158

“Doing the workbooks and watching the videos at my own pace has helped me a lot in pursing the current workforce requirements.” — Merritt Ray, Loganholme QLD 4129

“I was able to finish the whole course in just a couple of weeks.” — YoonOck Lee, Atwell, WA 6164

“By watching videos on one particular topic and doing a test straight after relating to those videos, you don’t become too overwhelmed with too much information.” — Michelle Bankstown, NSW 2200

“I am happy as I could completely the course at my own pace. It was easy n simple to understand. As a mother I felt the course was very time efficient. Looking forward to putting my knowledge into action.” — Kimberline Francis, St James, WA 6102

“This course is best for me because I can access any time from home, I can replay any video provided when I didn’t understand.” — Mika Humphreys, Innisfail, QLD 4860

“Everything within the course itself was great. I liked the most how easy it was to understand and navigate through.” — Katie Davis, Whyalla, SA 5608

“Being able to actually move around the sample company file to get a feeling of how the software is structured, made me have more confident.” — Joy Khoo, Mudgee, NSW 2850

“The best parts of this course is that we get freedom to learn and complete this course in your own suitable time. There is not so much pressure that you have to complete in certain time limit. I would advise and recommend this course from EzyLearn to international students who want to further their career in bookkeeping and accounting. It was a great privilege to be part of your institute.” — Prabin Gurung, Auburn, NSW 2144


We’d love to hear from you too. Get in touch via our course evaluation page.


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‘Commenting’ in Databases

We suggest only writing the glad, not the bad, when it comes to comments in databases - and indeed, perhaps in life.
We suggest only writing the glad, not the bad, when it comes to comments in databases – and indeed, perhaps in life.

Nearly every company has one – usually as part of their CRM software, but other times it’s just a good ol’ faithful Excel document. Either way, databases are commonplace in a great deal of companies and they’re often used to keep track of communication between staff and their customers.

But what’s the rule on commenting in databases, or specifically, leaving negative comments in databases?

Comments – Integral to a Database

Making general comments in a database following a conversation with a client is pretty much standard practice – in many cases, it’s often the reason you have a database. In customer service call centres, for example, leaving a detailed comment about the discussion you’ve had with a customer is expected – and serves as an invaluable resource for the next person who speaks to that customer.

In this instance, it’s sometimes appropriate to leave comments about the customer’s temperament – angry, rude, upset, and so forth. This just helps the next staff member manage this customer in a manner that suits the circumstances.

But many companies quite commonly also use databases for the express purpose of selling something to a new or potentially new client; negative comments speculating on the temperament or nature of a contact in a database, may not be altogether helpful in this instance.

Reading that the person you’re about to call or have a meeting with is a ‘disgruntled curmudgeon’ is almost certainly going to affect the way you interact with that person. If you go into something expecting hostility, you’ll naturally position yourself on the defense, which in turn is only going to illicit hostility back.

Ditching the Negativity

But what if that person was only responding with hostility because you pre-empted their alleged hostility by being defensive in the first place? That’s a question you may never know the answer to, unless you ditch the negative comments in your database.

That doesn’t mean you can’t write useful comments such as “spoke to John, but he said he wasn’t interested in our product’, but you should definitely avoid comments like ‘spoke to John who was extremely rude and said he wasn’t interested in our product.’ The added detail in the latter is not particularly useful and if that person does ever become a customer it could underscore your interactions with them.


It can be a good philosophy to only write the glad, not the bad. Perhaps have a think about that when you leave comments in a database, or make a policy about your own database usage.

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Feel Threatened by a Newcomer in Your Workplace? Gain Knowledge, Instead!

The more confident you are in your abilities the less threatened you will feel by the arrival of a newcomer to the workplace.
The more confident you are in your abilities the less threatened you will feel by the arrival of a newcomer to the workplace.

As part of our MYOB Training Course, we’re constantly adding new content and helping our students win work and improve their employability. That’s why we always emphasise the importance of continuing to educate yourself — for the obvious skills advantages you bring to any company, but also for your own confidence.

For many people, it can be a little nerve racking when new blood enters the workplace and in today’s job market, it’s not at all uncommon to see a new face appear. Sometimes it’s in the form of a new employee there to share your workload and other times it’s because your organisation has employed someone to help restructure the business so they operate more efficiently.

The Many and Varied Threat

For many employees, this new face around the office can make them feel threatened — threatened about the future of their jobs and threatened by the prospect of the office dynamic changing. Fortunately, however, there’s an antidote for this rather common reaction to change: taking a course or continuing professional development.

The thing about feeling threatened is that it’s entirely to do with your confidence. You may feel like you’re not quite as educated or as skilled as this other person and as a result, you think your employer won’t need you any more. The truth is, your employer probably has no intention of letting you go, but nevertheless, the job market is changing and up-skilling to increase your knowledge base is invaluable — to you and your employer.

Confidence in Upskilling and Continuing Professional Development

Aside from the tangible knowledge and experience a highly-skilled employee brings to an organisation, they also bring with them confidence. The more secure you feel with your ability to do your job and do it well, the more confident you’ll feel as a result. For this reason, EzyLearn is a big believer in continuing professional development.

Our MYOB, and Microsoft Word and Excel training courses each come with lifetime access to the course content, so that you can review the course material and even access updated content, whenever you need it.


A truly confident person would embrace the idea of working with someone new and potentially learning and sharing knowledge, rather than feeling threatened by them. But the key to achieving this confidence is being able to feel secure in your own knowledge base and that’s what EzyLearn’s Continuing Professional Development Program aims to provide bookkeepers with: knowledge.

So stop worrying, stop feeling threatened, and feel more confident in your skills and knowledge by taking one of our online courses today!

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What’s New in MS Office 2013? Here’s a Quick List

Frequent updates and infrequent use of software like Excel can really leave you stumped - that's where Lifetime Membership comes in real handy!
Frequent updates and infrequent use of software like Excel can really leave you stumped – that’s where Lifetime Membership comes in real handy!

At EzyLearn we offer online training courses for MYOB — the #1 Cloud-accounting software — but did you know we also offer training in Microsoft Excel and Word?

Just as we do with our MYOB training courses, we also offer Lifetime access to our MS Excel and Word training courses, which means each time Microsoft releases a new version of MS Office, we update our course content so you’re always totally up to date with the latest versions of Word and Excel.

Keeping Excel in Your Memory

Let’s be straight up here; once you get the hang of Word you probably won’t need to refer back to our course content all that much. Excel, on the other hand, is a different ball game.

In many ways Excel is a lot like algebra or a foreign language: if you don’t use it often, you’ll forget it. Sure, you’ll remember bits — J’adore Dior! E = mc2! — but you’re likely to struggle through your day-to-day if it’s something you rely on heavily at work.

Because many people use accounting software like MYOB, their use of Excel is fairly infrequent. For instance, suddenly trying to create a PivotTable will probably leave most of us stumped! And let’s not forget that by the time most users have mastered how to create macros in their worksheets, Microsoft will have released a new version of MS Office and we’ll be back to square one again. This, in large part, is a key reason why we offer Lifetime access to our training courses— because we, just like you, also forget stuff.

New Features in New MS Word and Excel (in a Nutshell)

Now that Microsoft has released their highly anticipated MS Office 2013, it’s likely you won’t be able to find the ‘Paste Special’ button again, so we’re updating our course content to reflect the new changes.

Here’s a low-down on some of the new features in the new MS Word and Excel:


  • Open and edit PDF files in Word – finally! Gone are the days of having an additional piece of software installed on your PC to enable this.
  • Threaded review comments
  • Read mode with page turning
  • Alignment guides – hallelujah! Why have they never had this before!
  • Placeholder


  • Quick analysis
  • Flash fill – we’ve always had this to an extent, but flash fill just got a whole lot more intelligent!
  • PowerView – for the real Excel pro, but still a welcome addition.
  • New PivotTable tools
  • Improved functionality when opening new Excel windows
  • Recommended PivotTables and charts
  • New chart controls
  • Get a link
  • Publish Excel data to social media – we don’t recommend using this often, because snore. But it’s still great if you want to quickly share your yoy sales results with your Twitter followers or Facebook friends.

So whether you’re using MS Office 2013, 2010 or prior, if you’ve forgotten how to do a VLOOKUP, it’s time you educated yourself in the mystery that is Excel — enrol in one of our Microsoft training courses today!

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Most budding bookkeepers want to start learning MYOB at 12.30pm!

Excel Online Training Course 308 - pivot table value field settingsHow do we know that most students want to start their MYOB training course at 12.30pm? We put all our course enrolment information into an Excel spreadsheet, inserted a pivot table and then filtered the data. Does that sound simple? Well it will be if you enrol into our online Microsoft Excel course.

The good news is that the video tutorial below will show you exactly what we did. If you are reading this blog as an email subscriber click on the heading to get to our blog site to watch the training video tutorial. If you want to receive these blogs posts via email, make sure you subscribe to our Employment and Productivity Training Blog.

The other good news is that when you enrol into our online Microsoft Excel Training Course you actually receive the data file that we used in this exercise so you can replicate it yourself! These figures are for enrolments into our MYOB course, Beginners, and Microsoft Office courses at our Dee Why training centre when we operated class-based training centres in Sydney.

Like all our online training courses, the Microsoft Excel training courses come with LIFETIME student access. The current course not only includes training videos, but nine training workbooks and over 40 exercise files that you can use to practice your Excel spreadsheeting skills.

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New Training Material: Advanced Microsoft Excel 2010 videos

Excel Online Training Course 308 - pivot table value field settingsSometimes we use the EzyLearn blog to provide some free tips from new training material that we create, like manipulating Pivot Tables we mentioned earlier in the week. Today we are announcing that 14 new training videos are now available for our advanced Microsoft Excel course (number 308).

This is the list of videos that are now available:

Video for 3.1.1 – Using AutoFilter

Video for 4.1.1 part 1 – Cleaning up data using AutoFilter

Video for 4.1.1 part 2 – Cleaning up data using AutoFilter

Video for 5.1.1 – Perform an Advanced Filter

Video for 5.1.2 – Advanced Filter using Wildcards (search text within cells)

Video for 5.1.3 – Advanced Filter for multiple search criteria

Video for 5.1.3 – Narrowing search results using Advanced Filter

Video for 6.1.1 – Inserting a Pivot Table

Video for 6.1.2 – Filtering data in a Pivot table

Video for 6.1.3 – Sort dates by month in a pivot table

Video for 6.1.5 – Changing the value field settings in a pivot table

Video for 7 – Creating pivot table charts

Video for 8.1.1 – Get months values using the Choose function

Video for 8.1.2 – Show grades for student results data using CHOOSE function


Our new video references match the many exercise tasks you can complete to master the skills taught in the videos. Everything you watch in the videos you can re-produce using the exercise files that come with the course. The training workbooks contain step by step instructions so you can print them out and practice where-ever you are.

If you are an existing EzyLearn student with LIFETIME access you’ll have access to these new videos and all new content that we create. Stay tuned for more updates soon as we create new videos for the other advanced Excel topics covered in courses 308 and 309. Plus we’ll show you how to create your own macros.

If you like what you read and want to enrol to take advantage of lifetime student access as well as access to all levels of Microsoft Excel for just one price, use our enrolment form. Enrol into the Excel course today and start by 5pm tomorrow (next business day).

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Live Excel Pivot-Table Stats: self-paced learning versus class-based training

Excel Course 308 - pivot table value field settings for intermediate to advanced Excel training courseWant to see some live data from when we operated our Sydney-based training centre? We conducted courses for Absolute Beginners (we call it Computer Learners now), Microsoft Word and Excel, MYOB Accounting software for bookkeeping and others. We also offered different start times and different methods of delivery including self-paced (which has evolved into online) as well as class-based training courses.

The data in this free Microsoft Excel training video is taken from our student enrolment database the same year we created our first training videos. We created these videos to make them available to students who couldn’t fit into a schedule or wanted a more personalised training experience. Want to learn more about my fond journey in computer training? Feel free to also subscribe to my small business blog while you are at that site.

If you are reading this as an email, click on the heading to get to our blog site and enjoy the free training video about Pivot Tables using Microsoft Excel (the exercise file is provided in our Excel Training Course) and shows live data of enrolments for that year. We used a pivot table to find out:

  1. The popular courses,
  2. The popular training methods
  3. The popular start times for courses.

Can you see in the video which year the data is from? Back then we had experienced trainer like Maria Landrelli and Marie Diblasio to deliver our popular MYOB Day-to-Day courses to find work as a bookkeeper.

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New Macros in Excel Course to handle prepayments

Excel Macros in advanced Microsoft online Excel Training courseWe are please to announce that our most advanced Microsoft Excel course (course 309) now includes a training exercise on Macros!

You may recall we asked the question as to whether it is better to give a discount and accept prepayments or to charge your normal price and chase invoices and statements? Well, we got our Microsoft Excel expert to create a simple table that enables us to keep track of prepayments as well as incremental reductions from this prepayment.

This file is a great tool to keep track of how much credit a customer has if you decide to invoice them in advance. There is a way of accepting prepayments in MYOB and our MYOB expert and resident BAS Agent is currently putting a guide together on how to handle prepayments using MYOB. Using Excel  can be a handy replacement for using MYOB in this one aspect of your business.

Best of all, Karen created a short guide that we have added to the 309 course training manual which explains how to replicate what she created. Both the Workbook and the demonstration file that Karen created are now at the learning site.

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Can MYOB repay it’s debts with its head in the clouds?

cloud-accounting xero vs saasu vs myob online training courseWe wrote back in early 2010 about what appeared to be a revolutionary move at the time about MYOB founder Craig Winkler jumping ship and moving to Xero. In the recent bad press about the bug-ridden upgrade of MYOB AccountRight 2011 there is an interesting mention about Cloud Based accounting and MYOB’s goals to get into that space.

In the past 12 months we have worked with as well as provided training for many virtual assistants (remote contractors) and we’ve come into contact with other cloud-based accounting/bookkeeping services you might like to know about. Our pick of the bunch would have to be SAASU at this stage because they have a product that is perfect for remote contractors or micro businesses.

It appears that Xero and SAASU own the online accounting market space but it will be interesting to see how MYOB go as they diversify into cloud accounting as well as their many other products like website hosting, which we’ve never really understood when there are market leaders like MelbourneIT and NetRegistry as well as thousands of small providers.

While we’re on the topic of cloud, here’s a little plug for virion business grade voip. Our trainers have compiled an Excel spreadsheet to demonstrate the cost savings of VoIP over traditional telephony and this year we will have some training for IT Consultants about the Siemens Gigaset office phones.

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Is it better to repay your debts or prepay with discounts?

Microsoft Excel prepayments online training course and MYOBThe recent bad news about MYOB AccountRight 2011 demonstrates the risks involved when you borrow money for any venture (MYOB have a $575M loan that they need to repay). The money needs to be paid back and luckily you can use MYOB software to keep track of what is owed to you. It also brings up the question of rather than having a debt to repay can you pre sell what you do (at a large discount)?

We are asked many questions in our MYOB online training course support service we call “EzyLearn ANSWERS” and one of the recent questions was “what is the best way of keeping track of Prepayments”. We took the question to our Registered BAS Agent and MYOB Tutor as well as our Microsoft Excel Expert and we’ve come up with two scenarios, one using MYOB and one using Microsoft Excel.

What is the best solution?

You could use MYOB to handle pre-payments, or you could use it as a simple track of the lump sum payment you’ve received into your bank account and use Excel to enter the day to day information about how and when that prepayment is used.

We’ve created an Excel “Handy file” for you and we’ve putting the finishing touches on the workbook that explains how to do it using both Excel and MYOB so stay tuned to this blog or subscribe to receive these blog posts via email as they are published.

Need something created in Excel? Enrol into the online Microsoft Excel course and use EzyLearn ANSWERS to put it to our Excel guru.