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Calculating Future Workdays

Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Calculating Future Workdays.

Using Excel to calculate a date in the future is rather easy. If you have a cell (such as C3) that contains a starting date, you can simply use a formula such as the following in a different cell:

=C3 + 3

If you format the cell with the formula as a date, it will be three days in the future.

When you want to calculate workdays, the task gets trickier. For instance, you only want to return a date that is between Monday and Friday. If the starting date was a Thursday, this means the return date should be Monday, even though Sunday is the real day that is three days hence.

One quick way to figure a date three workdays in the future is to use the CHOOSE worksheet function. For instance, let's say you have the issue date for a document, and you store that date in cell B5. If you want cell B6 to show a date three workdays later, then you would place the following formula in cell B6 and make sure it is formatted as a date:

=B5 + CHOOSE(WEEKDAY(B5), 3, 3, 3, 5, 5, 5, 4)

This formula assumes that workdays are Monday through Friday. You can tinker with it to pick a different five-day workweek, if desired.

If you also want your formula to take holidays into account, then you must get a bit more creative. For these instances you can use the WORKDAY function, which is included as part of the Analysis ToolPak add-in. This means that you must make sure the Analysis ToolPak add-in is loaded before you can use WORKDAY. You can check if it is loaded by choosing Add-Ins from the Tools menu. Once the add-in is loaded, you could use the following formula in cell B6 to calculate the target date:

=WORKDAY(B5,3)

After you format the cell as a date, it will show the date three workdays in the future. To include holidays, the simplest way is to set up your holidays in the worksheet. For instance, you might put your company holidays in the worksheet in cells K4 through K10. Then, select the cells and give them a name, such as Holidays. You can now use your holiday rante in the WORKDAY function. Change the formula in cell B6 so it looks like this:

=WORKDAY(B5,3,Holidays)

Now the function will always take your holidays into account when returning a date three workdays in the future.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2164) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Calculating Future Workdays.

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Comments for this tip:

Harpreet Gujral    03 Mar 2012, 05:21
To further add to this explanation, a user should know, what is the usage of WEEKDAY().
If formula is entered as WEEKDAY("01/03/2012") would return 5, because 01st March 2012 is a thursday and weekdays are counted from Sunday i.e. a date on sunday would return "1" in this formulae.

Syntax for Choose(<Position>,ListItem1,ListItem2,ListItem3....).
Therefore choose function is actually helping to return the number of days to be added to the original date. Example if the original date is a Monday (i.e. Weekday would return 1), Choose function would return the value 3, which simply would add 3 days to the original date.
If the original date is a Saturday (i.e. the weekday function would return 7), choose function would return 4 (4 is 7th item on the list).

Choose function can incorporate 29 items in the list of items.

Hope this would help the other users.....

Excellent example and a solution to a complex problem.....
 
 

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