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My favorite new Excel trick -- Text to Columns!

I have a new favorite Excel trick for splitting the contents of one Excel cell into separate columns. It is SO completely awesome! Here are examples of how I've used it in the past week:

  • A column containing "LastName, FirstName" was split into separate LastName and FirstName columns
  • A column containing "Username@librarydomain" was split into separate Username and librarydomain columns so I could easily sort my data by library

Here's how it works, using a LastName, Firstname example:

  1. Make sure there's a blank column to the right of the column you want to split (or more, if the data will split into more than 2 columns)
  2. Select the column of data
  3. Click on the Data tab and select Text to Columns
  4. Choose how you'd like to divide your data (I chose Delimited)
  5. Select the appropriate option  (I chose "comma" for my example)
  6. Click through the next screen
  7. Presto!  2 separate columns --  LastName  and   FirstName

A picture of the process:


(click on the image to view it full-size)

Super slick!


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