Do you sometimes wonder how to share an excel file with different people? Perhaps each row in your excel file contains sensitive information, so you want each person to see only certain row that concerns them? We will see here how to make an excel file shared smartly. Then, we will see how RowShare, an online collaboration tool, can complement Excel in maximizing your sharing scenario. Say you are a teacher who records student grades in Excel, where you have a column containing all the grades. You don’t want each student to see other students’ grades. So, you want to share your Excel fie in a way that each student can only see their own grade. If that’s the case, then each row must correspond to a single person.

Share Your Excel Spreadsheet, Different Data, Different People

A Different Link for Each Person

The simplest way to do in Excel is by having several workbooks. In this case, one master where you record the columns containing sensitive information such as your students’ grades or employees’ salary. You are the only person having the access to that workbook. Every time you need to share some information to different people, copy certain rows corresponding to that certain person, and paste it in a new file. Share that new workbook instead of the master that has all information in it. So, at the end you will have several files, one for each person. To share your workbooks, you can either use email, or the cloud. If you decide to use the cloud, it means that you have to save those files separately and share a different link with each person. Note that, if you expect these users to add information to their copies of your file, once they return it to you, you’ll have to copy/paste it the other way to consolidate everything in your master file.

Hidden Sensitive Information

Excel offers the option to hide rows. That way, the rows containing sensitive information will be hidden from the spreadsheet. Just follow these steps to do it:
  • Select the rows you wish to hide
  • Right click and select hide
But, if you don’t want every user to see the same rows, you will need to create one copy for each contributor as well. Note that you need to protect your file to prevent them from unhiding the hidden rows. This method may take time, plus, the more people you need to share with, the more inconvenient it becomes. So, this is not the best way to share your file with a lot of people.
Is there any other way that is easier for me?

Do It in RowShare

You can use Excel together with RowShare, an online collaboration tool whose one of the strengths lies in its Access Rights. RowShare allows you to take control over the rows and columns you share. You can have different settings for different people. Smart sharing is only a matter of few clicks of a mouse.

Above your RowShare table, click on “Share” to define your table sharing settings when people access your table. First, decide what rows your users will be able to VIEW in your table, and then when they are allowed to EDIT:
  1. Nothing: View no rows
  2. His/her rows: Can only view their own row(s)
  3. All rows: Can view all the table
Here is a quick video to enlighten you: RowShare tables are stored in the cloud. So, whoever accesses it sees the same version of any RowShare table anytime and anywhere. If you hide any rows or columns, they will instantly become inaccessible to anyone visiting the table. As the table owner, you are the only one who can see hidden rows and columns. With RowShare Business, you also can have table co-owners who benefit of the same access rights as you. Try RowShare Business for free during 30 days!
Tip: If you already have all your work done in Excel, or if you want to continue to benefit from Excel analytics features, RowShare imports and syncs Excel files!

Happy RowSharing!