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Reordering Last Name and First Name

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: Reordering Last Name and First Name.

You may have a worksheet containing many cells with names that are in LastName, FirstName MI format. A common example of this would be an Excel worksheet designed to work as an expense account reporting form. You may want to convert these employee names into standard format, i.e. FirstName MI LastName. Performing this operation on more than a handful of cells can become quite cumbersome.

To make the conversion job easier, you can use a handy formula that rearranges the parts of the name for you. Assume that cell A1 contains the name Doe, Jane Q. and you want the conversion (Jane Q. Doe) to appear in cell B1. Place the following formula in B1:

=RIGHT(A1,LEN(A1)-LEN(LEFT(A1,FIND(",",A1)
-1))-2) & " " & LEFT(A1,FIND(",",A1)-1)

The formula works by breaking the string based on the placement of the comma. The formula will also work with suffixes and multiple middle initials as long as there is one and only one comma present in the source cell.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2168) 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: Reordering Last Name and First Name.

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Comments for this tip:

Christa    29 Aug 2014, 13:00
Last,First came out to be irst Last I adjusted the -2 to accommodate the lack of space between the words. This worked properly =RIGHT(A3,LEN(A3)-LEN(LEFT(A3,FIND(",",A3) -1))-1) & " " & LEFT(A3,FIND(",",A3)-1)
Faith    13 Apr 2013, 13:41
I purchased tax records. They have last name, first name and NO commas between them. Is there a way to reorganize for first name and then last name> I have almost 2,000 names to convert and handtyping them is very time consuming. Thank you!
Danny    07 Jan 2013, 13:16
This formula worked well for the first name in the list but I couldn't get it to work for the rest of the list. Don't know a lot about Excel, so probably not doing the right thing after putting the formula in B1.
DHAKSHINAMOORTHY.P    26 Dec 2012, 05:42
Thank you. i got cleared my doubt
daniel    11 Dec 2012, 11:26
I want a single cell formula that converts JOhn Doe to Doe, John

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