Microsoft Word is one of the most popular and useful programs for business owners and managers. With a wide variety of features, you can create a nearly limitless number of different documents. There are so many features in fact, that even long-term users still come across new ones all the time. A good example of this is the Spike.
What is the Spike?
If you have worked in the restaurant industry, or worked in offices that use older systems you are likely familiar with what a spike is.. It is literally a spike that is used to hold paper that you have finished with but want to keep hold of, perhaps to collate or check through later. Think of chefs spiking orders once the food’s left the kitchen or a secretary spiking an invoice that’s been paid.
Much like this physical tool, the Spike in Word allows users to essentially hold different items together until they need to be used. This feature is similar to the standard ‘copy” that we are all used to. The main difference is that the Spike can store information and content from different sources of your document, not just the last part you copied.
Say for example you have a 10-page sales report and want to create an executive summary. Instead of copying and pasting the main points from each section one at a time, you can copy each section to the Spike and then paste all of them at once.
How this feature works
You can add content to the Spike by simply highlighting it and pressing Ctrl + F3. This will cut the text you have highlighted and place it onto the Spike. From there, go and select the other content you would like to use.
Once you have all of the content spiked, you can paste it by:
- Clicking the mouse cursor where you would like to place the content. You can do this in your existing document or in a new document.
- Pressing Ctrl + Shift + F3.
This will take all of the content you have cut to the Spike and paste it into the document, and erase all of the content saved in the Spike. If you want to keep the content stored in the Spike and still paste it, you can do so by:
- Clicking the mouse cursor where you would like to place the content. You can do this in your existing document, a new document or another open document.
- Typing spike.
- Hitting F3.
This will put the content into your document while keeping a copy of it in the Spike. Be warned however, when using the Spike, your content will be cut from the source document. If you are staying within the same document, we recommend that you copy the content you would like to post into a new document and paste it there. Then, Spike it from there.
Viewing what you have spiked
If you forget what you have spiked, you can view what is stored there by:
- Clicking on the Insert tab.
- Clicking Quick Parts.
- Selecting AutoText from the drop down menu.
- Clicking on Spike.
As long as you don’t click Insert or anything else, you should be able to see the content.
If you are looking to learn more about using Word or any other Office program, talk to us today.