Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. 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: Adding a Dynamic Total in Your Document.

Adding a Dynamic Total in Your Document

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 14, 2018)

You can use Word to easily create a document that dynamically reflects changing values. For instance, you may have a document in which you have several figures mentioned. This might be a collections statement you are sending to a customer. Later you need to total these figures so you can show a total amount due. You can use bookmarks and a field to calculate the total due automatically. This is done in the following manner:

  1. Select the first amount that you want included in the total.
  2. Assign a bookmark to the selected amount; give it a name such as Amount1.
  3. Repeat steps 1 and 2 for each of the other amounts in your document, providing different bookmark names each time.
  4. Position the insertion point where you want the total inserted.
  5. Press Ctrl+F9 to insert a pair of field braces. Make sure the insertion point stays between the braces.
  6. Type =Amount1 + Amount2 + Amount3, and so on, where these are bookmark names. Make sure you include the names of all the bookmarks you defined and that you want included in the total.
  7. Press F9 to update the field.

Now, any time you change the amounts that you bookmarked, the field you inserted in step 6 will automatically be updated to the correct total. (You may need to print the document to update the fields, or you may need to select the field and press F9.)

You should note that this technique will not work properly if the amounts are formatted. For instance, if the amounts you want to sum include dollar signs and commas, then these will interfere with getting a valid sum with your formula.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (11406) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Adding a Dynamic Total in Your Document.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Fatal Errors in Word

If Word runs into a problem and the program can't continue, that can be distressing. Here are some things you can check ...

Discover More

Determining the Number of Paragraphs in a Document

When using a macro to process a document in some way, you often need to know the number of paragraphs in the document. ...

Discover More

Date for Next Wednesday

When working with dates, it is often helpful to be able to calculate some date in the future based on a starting date. ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Extracting INCLUDEPICTURE File Names

If you use the INCLUDEPICTURE field to add images to your document, you may love the macro in this tip. It allows you to ...

Discover More

Inserting a Page Number Field

The PAGE field is used to indicate the current page number on which the field occurs. If you want to add this field to ...

Discover More

Date Last Edited

You can insert several dynamic dates into your document. One you may want is to add the date when the last edit was ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is four minus 0?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.