3 Easy and Golden Steps to Record Macros Efficiently

Macros are one of the most efficient ways to execute commands that you run repetitively. It helps automate repetitive actions and helps you become more productive with your applications. Yet, many of us face stumbling blocks after we have recorded our macro program. For example, one common complaint is that the macros take a lot more time to execute than desired. Sometimes, non-essential actions also creep in, slowing down execution.

Keyboard input over mouse moves

One method that always gives better results is to use keyboard-macros over mouse-macros. Keyboard macros are more reliable. This is because the keyboard doesn’t care about coordinates or resolutions and instead the keyboard helps you record absolute positions. Try using common keyboard-combinations. For example, you can use the Esc key to pass on an instruction to close a dialog box or Alt+F4 to close a window, left and right arrow keys for navigation and similar. If you absolutely need to record using a mouse, try and avoid recording mouse moves. Instead, try and record only the mouse clicks.

Record only the essential

One of the other things that you need to remember is to record what is essential. A key to achieve this is to be able to recognize the unnecessary. Therefore, it is important to think through all the actions that you want your macro to execute. For example, things like screen updates when your macro runs or coding your macro to run automatic calculations, or animations can be a huge drain of resources. They add unnecessary overhead and will slow down event execution. Avoid recording anything that triggers such events when the macro is running.

Programmatic approach and documentation

Remember, macros by themselves have no intelligence. They diligently perform whatever you have recorded. So, while recording, try and avoid using absolute references. Always use relative references instead. For example, instead of asking your macro to say record an output in Excel at cell reference C12 (assuming you are using an AutoSum function for values in cells C1 to C11), you should instead instruct to find the last cell with a value, and then ask the macro to record the sum in the subsequent cell in the column. A little knowledge of programming is essential to be able to code efficient macros. This will also help you identify where you can optimize performance. For example, there could be faster API calls or algorithms that could help you perform the required actions faster.

You should also remember to comment in your code. There might be an occasion when to modify a certain action, you would need insertion in your code. If you comment your code, it will help you identify the code segment that needs modification, instead of you having to read through your code again in entirety and then find out where modification is required.

In conclusion, it is imperative that you test your program. This would help find and isolate bugs as well as unnecessary actions and you can take corrective action before you even execute your macro for the first time. These are only some highlights of ways that you can record more efficient macros. Keep reading and exploring more ways that help improve your macro’s performance.