If you need extract the last name from a full name in LAST, FIRST format, you can do so with a formula that uses the LEFT and FIND functions. The formula works with names in this format, where a comma and space separate the last name from the first name:
In the example, the active cell contains this formula:
At a high level, this formula uses LEFT to extract characters from the left side of the name. To figure out the number of characters that need to be extracted to get the last name, the formula uses the FIND function to locate the position of ", " in the name:
At a high level, this formula uses RIGHT to extract characters from the right side of the name. To figure out the number of characters that need to be extracted to get the first name, the formula uses the FIND function to locate the position of...
The FIND function finds the first space character (" ") in the name and returns the position of that space in the full name. The number 1 is subtracted from this number to account for the space itself. This number is used by the LEFT function as the...
At the core, this formula uses the RIGHT function to extract characters starting from the right. The other functions which make up the complex part of this formula just do one thing: they calculate how many characters need to be extracted. At a high...
The Excel LEFT function extracts a given number of characters from the left side of a supplied text string. For example, LEFT("apple",3) returns "app".
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