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When Are Macros Useful?

Macros are valuable for any situation in which you repeat the same group of steps in sequence. Obviously, the more operations you can cram into a single macro, the faster your document building will go. But you can achieve a remarkable time savings by combining short sequences of instructions whenever these are employed frequently. Here are a few of the kind of operations that are simpler with a macro:

  • Reformatting text

  • Inserting company, departmental, or product names multiple times in a document

  • Inserting terms that are foreign, long, or difficult to spell but are used frequently

  • Inserting date and time

  • Replacing a company or departmental name when it changes

  • Resizing and positioning graphics for uniform presentation

  • Inserting paragraphs of legal boilerplate

  • Inserting name and title at the ends of documents

The character of your documents will determine the kinds of macros you need. A keyboard shortcut to resize graphics is especially useful if you're developing a catalog, for example, while one that inserts an impossible-to-spell term can save you a good deal of grief in a medical text or legal brief. I dare say dozens of uses I've never thought of are already running through your mind, so let's move on to the instructions for creating one of these timesavers.

NOTE

The instructions in this article work in Word 2003; other versions of Word may require different steps.

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