Learn Microsoft Access Advanced Programming Techniques, Tips and Tricks.

Invoke Word Mail Merge from Access2007

Mail Merge is a powerful feature in Microsoft Word for creating and printing form letters.  For example: Employment Contracts with fixed employment terms but with changing personal details, like name, address, basic pay, allowances, contract period etc., that can have several pages. Normally this will be a preprinted document with standard terms of contract and fill-in-the-dotted-lines for personal details (that can be hand-filled or type written) model document.  But, this can be printed in original, with personal details automatically filled-in in appropriate locations on the document with the standard terms of contract.  This action can be automated and printed for several employees together within minutes.

All we need to do is to create a Table with personal details of employees; design a single Mail Merge Word Document with standard terms of employment contract, link the Access table with the  Word document and insert the personal detail fields, wherever applicable on the document.  Merge-print the document on printer.

In MS-Access2007 part of this mail-merge action can be invoked by selecting a Table or Query to link with the Mail-Merge Document in Microsoft Word directly.  You can link the Table/Query to an existing Word Document or create a new document linked with the selected Table or Query.  Let us create a sample document to understand how to do this from Microsoft Access2007.

  1. Open Microsoft Access2007.
  2. Open the sample database Northwind2007.accdb or Import the Employees table from this database into any database that you wish to open to try this out.
  3. Click on the Employees Table on the navigation pane to select it.
  4. Select External Data - - > Export - - > More - - > Merge it with Microsoft Word.

    Microsoft Word Mail-Merge Wizard opens up and gives you two choices; either to open an existing Word Document or to create a new one and link the Employees Table with the document. 

    Depending on what option you have selected the Employees Table is linked with that document.

  5. Select the Word Menu Mailings - - > Insert Merge Fields to display the linked Employees Table field list. See the image given below.

  6. Now, you must place the attached Table's data fields into appropriate locations on the Document's body to insert their contents there.  I have placed the name and address of the attached Employees Table on the Document.  Sample Document image is given below:
  7. Place the insertion point where you want the field content to appear then select the field from the Mailings - - > Insert Merge Fields Menu.
  8. Repeat this action to place other fields in appropriate places on the document.
  9. You can preview the Document by selecting Mailings - - > Preview Results at any stage of the preparation of document.  The sample preview of the above test fields is given below:

If the Employees table have 50 records in it then 50 copies of this Document will be printed when you select the option Mailings - - > Finish & Merge - - > Print Documents ; i.e. one document for each employee with their respective personal details merged in.

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