Excel New Year’s Shortcut: Update Dates

As we dive into the new year, updating dates in Excel sheets for 2024 is on everyone's agenda. The task may seem daunting, especially if you're dealing with numerous sheets or cells.

In this blog post, we'll walk you through a handy Excel shortcut that will simplify the task of updating headers and values across multiple sheets.

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The 2024 Header Date Update

One common task when updating Excel sheets for the new year is changing the headers to reflect the current year. Manually updating each cell can be tedious and time-consuming. Fortunately, there's an Excel shortcut that can help automate this process.

Update dates in Excel using the Ctrl + H Shortcut

The Ctrl + H Shortcut

To update all the headers for 2024, follow these simple steps:

  1. Select All Cells: Begin by selecting all the cells containing the headers you wish to update.
  2. Open Find and Replace: Press Ctrl + H on your keyboard to open the Find and Replace dialog box.
  3. Enter Values: In the “Find what” field, type 2023. In the “Replace with” field, type 2024.
  4. Execute Replace: Press Alt + A to execute the “Replace All” command. This will replace all instances of 2023 with 2024 in the selected cells.

Updating Dates Across Multiple Excel Sheets

What if you have multiple sheets in your workbook that need updating? The process is similar but requires an additional step to ensure accuracy.

Workbook vs. Sheet

When updating across multiple sheets, you'll need to specify whether you want to update the entire workbook or just the current sheet. Here's how:

  1. Go to Options: Navigate to the “Options” menu in Excel.
  2. Choose Workbook: Select “Workbook” instead of “Sheet” in the Find and Replace dialog box.
  3. Be Cautious: Before executing the replace command, ensure that there are no other values in the workbook that match the criteria. This will prevent unintended changes to your data.

Using Forward Slash for Precision

To avoid replacing values that contain the target year within other data, you can use a forward slash as a prefix. This ensures that only dates with the specified year are updated, leaving other values intact.

The Power of Excel Shortcuts

Excel shortcuts are invaluable tools for anyone looking to optimize their workflow. They allow you to perform tasks quickly and efficiently, reducing the time spent on manual operations. Whether you're a seasoned Excel user or just getting started, mastering shortcuts can significantly boost your productivity.

You can find our full list of Excel shortcuts here.


Updating Excel sheets for the new year doesn't have to be time-consuming. By leveraging the power of Excel shortcuts, you can streamline the process and ensure accuracy across multiple sheets.

The Ctrl + H shortcut can save you time and effort, allowing you to focus on more critical tasks.

1 comment

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  • Great info. I tend to make one date hard coded and all other dates formula driven off the hard coded one. This way, one cell change will update all dates as desired/appropriate.

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