Have you ever needed to generate a bunch of random numbers and thought there must be a better way than pulling numbers out of a hat?
Well, there is! Excel can do it for you! Excel has two different options to use:
=RAND – Returns a random number greater than or equal to 0 and less than 1, evenly distributed and changes on recalculations. (This means every time you enter something in a cell and hit enter the values change.)
=RANDBETWEEN(1,100) – Returns a random number between the numbers you specify, also changes on recalculation. In this example, the numbers are between 1 and 100. (This means every time you enter something in a cell and hit enter the values change.)
What the “changes on recalculation” means is that whenever something is added to a cell or changed in a cell the formulas for both the RAND and RANDBETWEEN functions calculate new numbers.
Look at the above snapshot with the original calculations, now look below to where the numbers were copied and pasted, using the paste special value option, now look to the left in columns A & C to the original calculations, all the numbers changed when I pasted special in columns F & H.
What else can you do with this you ask? If the kids are bored and have no dice you can still play a dice game using the RANDBETWEEN function. Simply type in =RANDBETWEEN(1,6) and Excel will choose a number from 1 to 6.
Have fun and stay productive!