A Simple Invoice System Using Microsoft Excel & Word

Your invoicing can be made easier and more productive by using a basic method integrating both Excel and Ms word.

First you need to create an Excel spreadsheet and format it in an appropriate manner, keeping in mind that this will form the basic structure of your invoice and will eventually be seen by your clients. It isn’t necessary to have any information relating to the Company (such as address, telephone etc.) as we will include these in our Word template in the next stage.

Now we need to create a Word document which will act as a template for all or our invoices. Leave the main body of the document empty as this is where the Excel spreadsheet will be embedded.

Now switch to your Excel spreadsheet and select the entire data table which you have created as the basis of your invoice. We now need to copy the data, then open your Word template and select where you want the data to be placed.

The next stage is dependent upon your version of Microsoft Word. If you are using Microsoft Word 2007, you will need to click the Paste button on the Home tab of the Ribbon.

Now you need to select ‘paste special’ and in the dialogue box choose ‘paste link’ and select Microsoft Excel Worksheet Object. Microsoft Word 2003 users will need to select ‘Edit on the main menu bar, followed by ‘Paste Special’. The dialogue box that appears is the same as that for Word 2007.

We now have a live dynamic link between our Word template and the Excel spreadsheet. The result is that if we modify any of our data in the Excel spreadsheet the Word invoice will update itself. Simply right-click the embedded object in Word after editing the spreadsheet and choose ‘update link’ to see the changes. Also, each time that the Word invoice is opened you will be prompted to update.

And that’s all there is to it, really quite an easy technique! It is however useful in several ways. Invoice data can be automatically calculated using formulas in Excel whilst presenting it in a professional manner to your clients. And by removing the necessity to duplicate data you cut down on the possibility of introducing errors.

I hope this simple technique may prove useful to you and your business.