Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Counting Employees in Classes.

# Counting Employees in Classes

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated April 23, 2024)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365

Beth was looking for a way to determine how many employees had taken at least ten classes that were offered at her company. She set up Excel so that column A (beginning at A2) contained employee names, and column B (beginning at B2) contained class names. When an employee took a class, their name was entered in column A, and the name of the class they took was placed in column B. Thus, column A would contain multiple instances of each employee's name, and column B would contain multiple instances of class names.

The question of how to determine when an employee had taken ten classes can best be answered by using the COUNTIF function. For instance, the following formula could be entered in each cell of column C:

```=IF(COUNTIF(A:A,A2)>9,"10 classes or more","")
```

In order to use the formula correctly, this particular instance would be placed in cell C2 and then copied down in the rest of column C's cells. This causes the A2 reference in the formula to change so that it always references the cell two columns to its immediate left. (The formula in C2 references A2, the formula in C3 references A3, etc.)

Using this formula, when a particular person has taken their tenth class—meaning that their name appears in column A for the tenth time—then column C fills up with the phrase "10 classes or more" next to each class that particular person took. This is great, except when a bunch of different employees start crossing the ten-class threshold. Then column C starts to look cluttered.

To overcome the clutter, a variation on the above approach is to use the following formula in the cells of column C:

```=IF(COUNTIF(\$A\$2:A2,A2)>9,"10 classes or more","")
```

In this instance, the COUNTIF function doesn't look at every cell in column A; instead it looks at the cells in column A that are in rows less than or equal to the row in which the formula occurs. Thus, if this formula was in row 8, then COUNTIF would only look at rows 2 through 8 in doing its count. The result is that the phrase "10 classes or more" only appears in column C when a particular employee has passed the ten-class mark. It will not appear for instances where the employee was taking their first, second, third, and up to their ninth classes.

Finally, the employee class table can be made just a bit fancier, and you can see exactly how many classes each employee has taken. If columns A and B still contain names and classes, you could place a single instance of each employee name in the first rows of column D, leaving column C blank. In column E you can place the following formula to the right of each employee name:

```=COUNTIF(A:A,D2)
```

The result is that column E contains the number of instances of the name in column D that appears in column A. In other words, you have a count of how many classes each employee has taken. You could then use conditional formatting on the cells in column D so that they are shown in red if the count in column E is 10 or more.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (10345) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Excel in Microsoft 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Counting Employees in Classes.

##### Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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What is two less than 6?

2020-06-29 09:55:20

Allen

Eric,

That being said, when you see the invite to subscribe, if you click the "close" link in the invite AND you have cookies enabled on your system AND you don't delete those cookies, then you should not see that invite again for about 6 months.

-Allen

2020-06-28 22:13:45

Tom D Santi

Interesting tip. I'm curious why you wouldn't just run a pivot table counting the instances of each name in column A (row would be Name; values would be count of Name). Then sort the pivot table high to low based on the counts of the names.

2020-06-27 11:06:14

Eric Toll

Alan,

I enjoy your Windows, Excel and Word tips each week and have purchased some of your books. I subscribe to the newsletters. When I go to the website to read the details on the tip, after about 15 seconds, the screen is blocked by a popup asking me to subscribe. Since I reached the site with a link from my newsletter subscription, this is very annoying. I have to stop reading midsentence and reach for my mouse or touchpad or phone and close the window.

With all your maco magic, isn't there a way to recognize a subscriber and prevent the window from popping up?

Thanks

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