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Mail merge pulling incorrect data from Excel data source

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Last Modified: 2012-08-16
I have a mail merge document that we run every week.  There is a CSV file that gets dumped from our ERP system once a week.  I open the CSV in Excel, format some of the fields and remove some of the data, resave it to a different location (My Documents) as an XLS.  Then in the mail merge document, I choose "Select a different list" for the data, select the new XLS file I just saved, and it recognizes and pulls in the all of the data.  However, one field is an item number field.  Most item numbers are just 5-8 digit numbers but some of them have a a size extension, which shows as a number with a "-XL".  When these pull over to the Word doc, for some reason it is turning them into zeros (0).  This process is repeated weekly for the past 2 or 3 years.  If I pull in the data from last week's file, it works fine.  I have recreated this week's file several times in different formats and it continues to do this.  Does anyone have any idea why the mail merge would change any values that have a dash in them to a zero?

Any help is greatly appreciated!

Thanks,
Casey
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Commented:
Try this and see if it helps.

select the entire column, go to the Data menu and use the Text to Columns tool. Set the column specifically to be "TEXT" (not general or numeric). SAVE the change, link the
 data back into the mail merge document, and test.

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Commented:
Wow...that actually worked!  I have been banging my head off the wall for 2 days trying to figure out a solution for this.  Thanks so much babyhuey!