IF function fail

Copper Contributor

I'm doing an IF function in a table.  This is an assignment and the book tells you what to type.  I have done this particular function several times, deleted the assignment, started over, and have hit the same problem.  I do not have a clue what to do.  Excel is not my forte.

8 Replies


Please provide some details.

  • What is the formula that you tried to enter?
  • Does Excel not accept the formula?
  • Or does it return an error value such as #VALUE! ?
  • Or does it return a different result than you expected?


@Hans Vogelaar Is there a way to attach a file?  #spill! is the result and I've looked through all of the options for that.  Honestly don't understand enough and follow directions.


#SPILL! means that the formula wants to return a result to multiple cells, but some or all of those cells are already occupied.

If you cannot attach a file here, you can upload it to for example OneDrive, then share it and post a link in a reply. Or attach it to a private message to me - click on my user picture.

Ok..I'll try to get that sent. I tried to widen the column but it's set where the book wants it.


Your current formula is


=IF([Specialty]="Loans",[Account Values]*0.0025,0)


[Specialty] and [Account Values] refer to the entire table column of that name; that won't work. You have to refer to the item in the current row instead. To do that, use [@Specialty] and[@[Account Values]]. The extra brackets in the latter one are necessary because of the space in the column name.

So the formula becomes


=IF([@Specialty]="Loans",[@[Account Values]]*0.0025,0)



I'll give that a whirl. Wonder why the blasted book did it the other way. Grrrr. thanks!
Worked!! I NEVER would've figured that out and the instructor would not have responded until Monday.


Perhaps the book was written for an older version of Excel, when formulas didn't "spill" yet.