Create a Mail Merge Document Using the Mail Merge Toolbar


This procedure explains how to merge a template with a data file using the Mail Merge Toolbar in Microsoft Word 2016 to produce a finished communication. The steps are similar in other versions of Microsoft Word, but the screens and some of the steps may differ. Refer to Using Mail Merge in Microsoft Word for more information about using mail merge functionality in Microsoft Word 2016.

To create a Mail Merge document using the Mail Merge Wizard, refer to Create a Mail Merge Document Using the Mail Merge Wizard.


To prepare for this procedure, locate and open Microsoft Word on your computer.

Step-by-Step Process

Note: This procedure assumes you already have an existing template and an extract file from the Letter Generation process.

  1. Open the template you want to use for the mail merge.
    • When you open a template, you may receive a warning message, “Opening this document will run the following SQL command.” Click Yes to open the document with a data source already attached, or click No to remove the data source. If you click Yes, complete step 2, then go to step 5.
  2. Click the Mailings tab.
  3. Click Start Mail Merge.

    mailings tab - start mail merge button location

  4. Select the type of document you want to create. For the purpose of this procedure, a letter is being created.

  5. Note: Complete steps 5-7 only if the extract file was not attached in step 1 or the attached extract file requires edits.

  6. Click the Select Recipients button.

    mailings tab - select recipients menu

  7. Click Use an Existing List....
  8. Select the data source you want to use in your mail merge from the Select Data Source window.
    • The recommended format for Letter Generation extract files is CCLTRxxx.txt, where xxx = the letter code (e.g., CCLTRDSM.txt).
  9. If applicable, follow steps 9-10 to make changes to your template. Otherwise, go to step 11.
  10. (Optional) Click the Insert Merge Field menu to insert a field in your document.

    mailings tab - toolbar

  11. (Optional) Click the Rules menu to insert certain Word fields that perform an action or calculation, such as inserting a prompt or an "if...then...else" condition.
  12. Press Alt+F9 (or Option+F9 on a Macintosh) to toggle between the field codes and a preview of the first record. Use can then use the Preview Results button and arrow keys to preview additional records in your file.
    • You cannot use Preview Results when the field codes are visible.
  13. Click Finish & Merge.

    mailings tab - finish and merge menu

  14. Click Edit Individual Documents to create your letters.
    Click Send E-mail Messages under the Finish & Merge menu to send merged email messages using another program. Your data file must contain a column with each recipient’s email address. You must have MiWorkspace set up an IMAP mailbox in order to send email via Outlook.
  15. Select which documents you want to merge:
    • All – Merge all records
    • Current record – Merge just the current record
    • From/To – select a range of letters to merge

    merge to new document dialog box

  16. Click OK.
    • Based on the recipient list, a letter is created for each recipient.

  17. Note: Complete steps 16-17 only if you selected Edit Individual Documents in step 13.

  18. Scroll through the document to verify the merge was successful.
  19. Click File and print as desired.