Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Using Document Properties to Ensure Consistent References.

Using Document Properties to Ensure Consistent References

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 13, 2013)

1

There are many times when you are putting together a document that you need to make sure that certain references are consistent. For instance, you may need to refer to a particular person's name or a company name, and it is imperative that the references be precise and accurate throughout the document.

There are several ways you can handle this situation using Word. One rather unique way is through the use of document properties. You probably already know that Word maintains a series of properties for your documents. These properties include things such as the size of the document, the last time it was updated, and the like. You can also define custom properties that act like variables for your document. To define a custom property, follow these steps:

  1. Choose the Properties option from the File menu. Word displays the Properties dialog box.
  2. Click on the Custom tab. (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Custom tab of the Properties dialog box.

  4. In the Name field, specify the name you want associated with this property. This is the name you will later use to reference the property in your document.
  5. In the Type field, pick the type of property you are creating.
  6. In the Value field, specify the value of the property.
  7. Click on the Add button. The new property appears in the list of properties in the dialog box.
  8. Click OK to close the Properties dialog box.

Now you are ready to use the new document property within your document. You do this in this manner:

  1. Position the cursor at the point where you want your reference to appear.
  2. Insert a field by pressing Ctrl+F9.
  3. Within the field, type DOCPROPERTY [name], where [name] is the name of the document property you previously defined.
  4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 for each occurrence of the value or text.

When you display the field results, Word fetches the contents of your custom document property and displays it in place of the field. If you change the value assigned to the document property and then update the fields in the document, all instances of the reference are updated.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (224) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Using Document Properties to Ensure Consistent References.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Removing Confusion When Using AutoCorrect

AutoCorrect is a great help when writing, as it can allow you to create regular blocks of text easily. This can cause ...

Discover More

Converting Text to Comments

One of the strong suits of macros is that they can process the information in a document quickly and reliably. For instance, ...

Discover More

Easily Printing to PDF

It used to be quite difficult to produce a PDF file from an Excel workbook. Times change, though, and you now have a variety ...

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (menu)

Inserting Different Dashes

Dashes have a lot of different uses in writing. Word supports three types of dashes, as discussed in this tip.

Discover More

Adding Serial Commas in a Sentence

Part of the job of an editor is to apply standards of grammar to text written by someone else. One standard that may need to ...

Discover More

Inserting Foreign Characters

It is not unusual to need to insert foreign characters (often called diacritical marks) as part of your typing. Word provides ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is eight more than 1?

2015-01-21 15:41:25

VeeeK

Hello,

Would anyone have a suggested taxonomy for tags, subjects, categories for a medium sized business?

Letting people create their own properties is very inconsistent.


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.