Difference Between Spreadsheet and Workbook


Primary Difference

While the computer is a valuable tool to have but it does not have the capacity to do wonders for people who are using it if there are no devices present. One of the major tools that are used by individuals to perform tasks on the computer is that they have to enter information, save it and use for several purposes. To do this, they need an application, and the system provides that. Spreadsheets and Workbooks are two leading in the category and have their uses. The first one people to manage their data and store it in a proper format. The second one has the use of providing people with several pages and blocks for storing the information.

Comparison Chart

A program that helps in managing data and entering values.A program that helps in managing data for bigger purposes.
Keep the information that is entered, save and accessible.Keeps the data safe and denotes location to access it anytime.
A collection of sheets that combine to form a workbook.A workbook becomes the collection of several spreadsheets at the same time.
Data such as numbers, formulas, and text stored in a spreadsheet.Contains all the information stored in separate spreadsheets.

Definition of Spreadsheet

This tool is known as an interactive program that helps people to manage their data and store it in a proper format. Individuals do not just use it for common purposes, but many organizations have access to make sure all the information they require is present at one place and stored for further usage. The values are entered by the person using the program and take the form of tabular format. Spreadsheets developed as the electronic version of a standard paper that accounts for worksheets. Several cells are present on the screen with different rows and columns; the first one is in the form of numbers and the latter one as alphabets so a person will know the exact location just by looking and the top and sideways. Usually, the format is A1, B2, C3 and similar ways. This page becomes a single cell where data entered in the form of either number of texts. People also have the facility to create formulas and then use them to get answers spread throughout the tabular page. All the results automatically calculated once the values entered and proper representation hence gets enabled. The users have the chance to adjust the values and formulas according to the requirement, and many cases get recalculated without any trouble. Along with performing such calculations as addition, subtraction and others the modern facilities include built-in functions for the most common financial and statistical operations. This action helps the companies to manage their performance and data in a simple manner without having to use hundreds of pages.


Definition of Workbook

A workbook is part of the package that comes with the Microsoft Office software that contains within it, several applications that help people to work and manage stuff online. It is part of the Excel sheets and consists of several pages that help in location and finding out information easier. They also become part of the data that is entered by the companies and other organizations for various purposes. Several kinds of data can get introduced into the system; it can either exist in the form of words or numbers. They play a significant role in organizing the information for personal and official uses. They are essential for keeping track of relevant information that can become useful. To understand the system, there are several blocks on a page where people get to enter any kinds of text they want. This particular data example such as keeping track of the time an individual employee has worked, purchases made by the customer, selling products and other relevant information. Microsoft provides such tools for companies, and people get to access them through the workbook option within the package. One advantage of a workbook is that people get to manage their information and find it at one place. They get labeled according to the requirement. The bottom side of the page provides tabs that have titles of all the other pages within a workbook so that people just click the required page and then access the data present on them. This software has many worksheets within it which collectively make a workbook.

Differences in a Nutshell

  • A spreadsheet is an interactive computer application for managing the data in a proper way, analyzing it and storing the information in tabular form. Whereas, a workbook deals with providing several pages of information that gets collected at one place.
  • A spreadsheet is a collection of worksheets that combine to form a workbook, whereas a workbook becomes the collection of several spreadsheets at the same time.
  • The spreadsheet starts with numbers as rows and columns as alphabets to locate towards a cell whereas a workbook starts with a number and has tabs at the bottom that help people access particular sheet at any time.
  • A spreadsheet contains around 1 million rows and a same number of columns whereas a workbook contains infinite numbers of spreadsheets.
  • Data such as numbers, formulas, and text stored in a spreadsheet and solutions gotten at the very instant whereas a workbook contains all the information that is stored in separate spreadsheets and becomes accessible quickly.
  • Spreadsheets help in entering data whereas workbooks assist in managing data.


When it comes to items that are part of the same package and even look similar, it is then required to have a proper information laid out for understanding. This article has done just that and helps the user to know more about a workbook and spreadsheet, along with relevant examples and explanation that becomes required for using them correctly.

Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Difference Wiki. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss