Let Word's Mail Merge feature insert Access data into your Word documents

If you need to bring Access data into a Word document, the Mail Merge feature will simplify the task. Mary Ann Richardson steps through the process.

If you need to report on the latest data in the company's employee database and don't have Access, you can use Word's Mail Merge Directory feature. With this feature, you can quickly add data from any Access table into a table in any Word document. Follow these steps:

  1. Open a blank document.
  2. In Word 2002/2003, go to Tools | Letters And Mailings | Mail Merge. (In Word 2007, click the Mailings tab, click Start Mail Merge in the Start Mail Merge group of the Mailings ribbon, and select Step-By-Step Merge Wizard.)
  3. Select Directory in the Mail Merge task pane.

  1. Click Next: Starting Document.
  2. Click Browse and then navigate to the Access database that contains the data you want to insert into your document.
  3. Click the Open button.
  4. Click the table containing the data.
  5. Click OK twice.
  6. In the task pane, click Next: Arrange Your Directory.
  7. Click the Insert Table tool on the Standard toolbar. (In Word 2007, click the Insert tab and then click Table.)
  8. Click and drag over the first four cells to create a 1 x 4 table.
  9. Click in the first cell of the table, if necessary.
  10. Click More Items in the task pane.
  11. Click the InternID field, click the Insert button, and then click Close.
  12. Click in the second cell of the table.
  13. Click More Items in the task pane.
  14. Click the LastName field, click the Insert button, and then click Close.

  1. Click in the third cell of the table.
  2. Click More Items in the task pane.
  3. Click the FirstName field, click the Insert button, and then click Close.
  4. Click in the fourth cell of the table.
  5. Click More Items in the task pane.
  6. Click the PayRate field, click the Insert button, and then click Close.
  7. Click Next: Preview Your Directory in the task pane.
  8. Click Next: Complete The Merge in the task pane.
  9. Click To New Document.
  10. Click OK.

Now you can format the table any way you wish. Here we have inserted a row above the table, added table headings, and selected a format from the Word 2007 table gallery.

Be sure to save the Main document file so that you can get the latest data from the Access table without having to set up the document again. Simply open the file and then click the Merge button on the Mail Merge toolbar in Word 2002/2003 or click the Finish And Merge Button on the Word 2007 Mailings ribbon.

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