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Business LibreTexts

18.11: Access and Mail Merge

  • Page ID
    46683
  • Learning Outcomes

    • Create Word mail merge file from Access Data

    Microsoft makes it easy to use data from one program and integrate it into another. One of the best ways to use Access with Word is in a mail merge. Here is how to have Access and Word work together to create mail merged letters to go out to customers.

    1. The first step is to open the customer contact database in Access you wish to use in the mail merger.
    2. Open Access, and you will see the list of available sources in the navigation pane on the left, if not press F11 and the left navigation pane opens showing the contact table. Double click to open it.
      Access screenshot of customer database table.
    3. Look through the table or query to identify the addresses to use in the mail merge for Word.
      1. If the addresses are saved in various tables, first create a simple select query with the fields needed, then select the query for the mail merge.
      2. Make sure to check the data for errors or missing cells and correct it before starting the mail merge.
    4. Select the External Data tab, and in the Export group select the Word Merge button.
      Access screenshot of external data tab, Word merge button.
    5. A Word Mail Merge Wizard window then opens.
      Access screenshot of customer database table import wizard screen.
    6. Decide if the wizard should like the address data into a new blank Word document or into an existing document. Select the option and click OK. For this example, we’ll create a new document.
    7. A Word documents opens, and the Mailings tab and Mail Merge pane are now open.
      Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge wizard open.
    8. In the mail merge pane at the bottom are the wizard steps to walk through using the Next or Previous links. In Step 2 you can choose to compose your own letter or to pick from various templates. We’ll choose a template and then update it. Click the link to move to the next step.
      Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge wizard open and choosing letter template window open.Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge letter open.
    9. In Step 3, select the Access contact file. Select the Browse link under Use an existing list area and select the Access file.Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge letter open and step 3 open.Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge letter open and browse window open to select Access table file.
    10. If you need to edit the list select the Edit recipient list and sort, apply filters, find duplicates, remove contacts, etc. in the open dialog box. In this case we’ll use all the contacts for the merge.
      Word screenshot of mail merge recipients from Access table file.
    11. Now is the time to in the Word document to edit the letter, select the area for the address data to appear and select the Address block, Greeting line, etc. in the right side Mail Merge wizard menu and it inserts the Access data into the document.
      Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge letter open and wizard option to place merge fields in document.Word screenshot of mail merge document with mail merge buttons highlighted in the Mailings tab.
      1. Besides using the Wizard, you can format each merging area from the Mailings tab, Write & Insert Fields group in the ribbon.
      2. Select the style of greeting, the formality or informality or other options in the dialog boxes for each merge field.
        Word screenshot of mail merge letter open and address merge field window open to select how address is displayed.Word screenshot of greeting line merge field window open to select how greeting is displayed.
    12. The wizard’s step 5 allows you to preview the merged data in the document before you print it. Even in this stage you may have forgotten to add a space between the first and last name, too much space in the address field, or other errors. Now is the time to correct them.
      1. Use the Preview your letters area to arrow through the recipients and double check for errors.
      2. If you decide at this point to exclude one or a few of the recipients click the Exclude this recipient button or click the Edit recipient list link.
        Word screenshot of mail merge letter open and area for arrowing through merged letters to check or exclude recipients.
    13. Step 5 completes the merge and Step 6 of the wizard is where you Pint the merged document. There is an option at this step to change individual letters by selecting the Edit individual letters link which generates all the letters in one Word file so you can edit.
      Word screenshot of mail merge letter ready to print and the print window open.
    14. The last step is to save the new mail merged document for later printing or to send to someone else to print and send these letters.

    Now that you have walked through the steps of merging and Access table into a Word mail merge letters here is a six minute video to watch and see the entire process to reinforce the steps.

    An interactive or media element has been excluded from this version of the text. You can view it online here: http://pb.libretexts.org/cafm/?p=632

    You can also view a transcript for the video “Mail Merge Microsoft Access Data into Microsoft Word Documents” here (opens in new window).

    CC licensed content, Original
    • Access and Mail Merge. Authored by: Sherri Pendleton. Provided by: Lumen Learning. License: CC BY: Attribution
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