Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Making Common Information Accessible.

Making Common Information Accessible

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 17, 2020)

3

You may have a lot of common information that needs to appear in many different documents. For instance, you may need your address, phone number, or similar information to appear in lots of different documents. The problem is that addresses, phone numbers, and other information can frequently change. Thus, if you want to change this common information in a bunch of files, you must resort to making tedious changes, or you must use a macro or a third-party solution.

One way to potentially save time when including common information in a file is to store the common items in their own file and bookmark them. Then, in the main document files you can use the INCLUDETEXT field to refer to the bookmarked item. The field, when it is updated, automatically grabs the current values of the bookmarked items and inserts them in the document. This approach allows you to update the address, phone number, or what-have-you in the single file, and have the change propagate through your other documents.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10050) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Making Common Information Accessible.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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What is 2 + 9?

2014-08-30 10:25:10

Graham Hobson

Great and useful tip that I have already started to use within 2 hours!! However, as per other comment, the page needs more information to be fully usable. Not only do you need to know how to bookmark text (Insert, Bookmark), but where the field code insert command is now located (Insert, Quick Parts, Field) and how to form the field code with the file path. And, may I recommend that you do NOT give explicit drive details (i.e. C:users<UserName>MyDocumentsFileName.doc) but use a relative path (e.g. http://windowssecrets.com/forums/showthread.php/154379-Word-Fields-and-Relative-Paths-to-External-Files) so that you can pass these documents for others to use in your organisation. It took me a while, but I know have this all working! Thanks for the tip.


2014-08-30 09:22:14

awyatt

Sally:

Bookmarks are here:

http://wordribbon.tips.net/T008718

The INCLUDETEXT field is here:

http://wordribbon.tips.net/T010803

You can find these (and many more tips) by using the search box at the upper-right of any page on the site.

-Allen


2014-08-30 05:46:19

Sally

Great tip - but how do you bookmark text? And where is the INCLUDETEXT field?
Thanks
Sally


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