Using Excel to split a full name into 2 separate columns

So, say you have a contact list of 2000 odd full names (first and last name together) provided to you in an Excel file and you want to create personalised printed invitations using InDesign’s data import feature only using the first name.

How can you isolate the first name only? Using a quick Excel formula is how, it will take a couple of minutes no matter how big the list is and your client will think your a wizard.

Getting the first name

Create 2 blank columns to the right and add the following formulas. For the first name:

=LEFT(A2, SEARCH(" ",A2,1))


But what if you wanted to isolate the last name instead?

Using the same process as above

=RIGHT(A2,LEN(A2)-SEARCH(" ",A2,1))