How to Use a Reference in a Different Worksheet in Excel

By Danielle Cort

Whether you are creating a multi-year budget or working on multi-sheet financial spreadsheets, chances are, you will need to create formulas that tabulate information on a single sheet. Excel allows you to maintain multiple worksheets in a single workbook yet create a single formula that references cells across the different worksheets. Any formula you create can accept references from multiple worksheets.

Step 1

Open the Excel workbook with multiple worksheets that you want to use.

Step 2

Click the tab at the bottom of the Excel window to select the worksheet in which you want to enter a formula.

Step 3

Click an empty cell to insert a formula. Type an equal sign, an Excel function and an open parenthesis to begin building your formula. For example, if you want to add numbers from different worksheets, enter:=SUM(

Step 4

Enter a cell number or another function from the current worksheet you want to work with. For example, if you are adding a number from cell A2 in the first worksheet to a number in cell A2 in the second worksheet, click or type cell "A2." Follow that with an operator. For example:=SUM(A2+

Step 5

Click a different worksheet tab at the bottom of the Excel application window. Click the cell you want to add to the formula next or type the cell address. Excel will insert the name of the worksheet you are referencing along with the cell number. For example:=SUM(A2+Sheet2!A2

Step 6

Type a closing parenthesis when you are finished building the formula and press "Enter." Excel will return you to the original worksheet. Your complete formula might look like this:=SUM(A2+Sheet2!A2)