Save Time with Excel Chart Templates

You’ve just finished creating an awesome custom chart in Excel. It’s the perfect fit for summarizing what’s important in your data. The problem is that making it takes way too long. I mean, 30 minutes to develop a chart is one thing, but 15 minutes to reproduce it every time is unacceptable. You lead a busy life – those mines won’t sweep themselves!

Instead of throwing out all your hard work, Excel templates come to the rescue! Templates allow you to save the formatting of a chart, so that you can access it later as if it’s just another built-in chart type. Instantly, 10 minutes of tedious chart formatting is reduced to 5 seconds of clicking a few buttons!

Creating a Chart Template

For this tutorial, we’ll continue to use Boxplot_Example.xlsx from my GitHub page.

If you remember from my last post, creating a boxplot takes some effort, and a good portion of that effort is spent just setting up the chart. That means it’s a perfect candidate for creating a template.

To create one, simply right-click the chart you’ve just finished, and select ‘Save as Template…’ This will bring up a new window where you can name the new template. I just named mine “Boxplot”. I recommend keeping the files saved in the default location, so no need to change anything there.

Now that you’ve named it, click Save, and your template has been created!

Using a Saved Chart Template

Here is where all your hard work pays off. From now on, any time you want to create a boxplot, all you need to do is assemble the data in the same way that we did in the last post, and the template will format the chart to what you want.

Highlight cells D12:F18. Then, in the Insert ribbon, select ‘Recommended Charts’. In the new window, select the ‘All Charts’ tab, and then click on ‘Templates’. Click ‘OK’ and you’re good to go!


Congratulations, you just saved yourself a bunch of time, and your reports make you look like pro!

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