How to Use Month and Weekday Functions in Excel for Easy Date Analysis

Excel, the powerhouse of data manipulation, offers a myriad of functions to make life easier for those dealing with dates and times. Among these are the MONTH and WEEKDAY functions, which extract the month and weekday from a date respectively. To use these functions, simply enter the formula =MONTH(cell) or =WEEKDAY(cell) where ‘cell’ is the cell containing the date. The result will be the numerical representation of the month (1 for January, 2 for February, etc.) or the day of the week (1 for Sunday, 2 for Monday, etc.) depending on the function used.

After entering the function and pressing enter, Excel will display the result in the cell where you entered the formula. If you entered the MONTH function, you’ll see a number between 1 and 12 representing the month. If you entered the WEEKDAY function, you’ll see a number between 1 and 7 representing the day of the week.

How to Use Month and Weekday Functions in Excel

Let’s talk about Excel’s MONTH and WEEKDAY functions. These are handy little tools for anyone who works with dates in their spreadsheets. Whether you’re a project manager keeping track of deadlines, a marketer analyzing campaign timelines, or just someone who likes to keep their personal itinerary neat and tidy, these functions can save you a lot of time and hassle.

The MONTH function will give you the month number of any date you specify, making it easier to sort and filter your data by month. The WEEKDAY function, on the other hand, will give you a number that corresponds to the day of the week for any given date. This can be especially useful for scheduling, as you’ll instantly know whether a certain date falls on a weekend or a weekday.

These functions are not just convenient but also critical when it comes to data analysis and reporting. Imagine trying to manually sort through hundreds or thousands of dates to find out which month they fall into or if they’re on a weekend. It could take hours, if not days! With these functions, Excel does all that heavy lifting for you in a matter of seconds.

Step by Step Tutorial: Using MONTH and WEEKDAY Functions in Excel

Before we begin, it’s crucial to understand that these functions will act on a date format recognized by Excel. Ensure that your dates are in a proper date format before using these functions.

Step 1: Enter the MONTH Function

Type =MONTH(cell) where ‘cell’ refers to the location of the date you want to know the month of.

When you press enter after typing this formula, Excel will process the date in the specified cell and return the corresponding month number. For instance, if the date is ’02/14/2021′, Excel will return ‘2’, since February is the second month of the year.

Step 2: Enter the WEEKDAY Function

Type =WEEKDAY(cell) where ‘cell’ is the cell containing the date you want to know the day of the week for.

After hitting enter, Excel will convert the date into a numerical value that represents the day of the week. By default, Excel starts the week on Sunday, which is represented by ‘1’. So if the date falls on a Sunday, Excel will return ‘1’, if it’s a Monday, Excel will return ‘2’, and so on.


Simplifies Date AnalysisThe MONTH and WEEKDAY functions make analyzing data by dates significantly easier. Sorting and filtering by specific months or days of the week becomes a simple task with these functions.
Saves TimeInstead of manually checking each date to determine the month or day of the week, Excel can calculate this instantly, saving valuable time that can be spent on other tasks.
Enhances Data VisualizationWhen creating charts or graphs, having the ability to quickly categorize data by month or day of the week enhances the clarity and usefulness of visual representations.


Requires Proper Date FormattingThe MONTH and WEEKDAY functions will only work if the dates are in a format that Excel recognizes. This means that additional steps may be required to convert data into the correct format.
Limited CustomizationThe WEEKDAY function has limited options for customization. For example, if your workweek starts on a Monday, you would need to adjust the formula to reflect this.
Potential for ErrorsIf the cell referenced in the formula is empty or contains invalid data, the function will return an error, which can potentially lead to mistakes if not caught and corrected.

Additional Information

While the MONTH and WEEKDAY functions are straightforward, there are a few additional tips and tricks that can make using them even more effective. For example, did you know that you can change the return type of the WEEKDAY function to match your start-of-week preferences? By adding a second argument to the function, you can set Sunday, Monday, or even Tuesday as the first day of the week.

Another tip is to use these functions in conjunction with other Excel features. For instance, conditional formatting can highlight weekends or specific months, making it even easier to visualize data patterns. Combining the MONTH and WEEKDAY functions with Excel’s powerful array formulas can unlock even more advanced data analysis capabilities.

Remember, while these functions are incredibly helpful, they’re just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Excel’s date and time capabilities.


  1. Enter the MONTH Function
  2. Enter the WEEKDAY Function

Frequently Asked Questions

What if my dates are not in a standard format?

Excel needs to recognize the dates to use the MONTH and WEEKDAY functions. You may need to convert your dates to a standard format using Excel’s DATE function or Text to Columns feature.

Can I set the WEEKDAY function to start the week on a different day?

Yes, the WEEKDAY function allows you to add a second argument to specify which day should be considered the first of the week.

How do I handle errors returned by these functions?

If an error is returned, check to ensure the cell referenced contains a valid date. If the cell is empty or has incorrect data, the function will not work correctly.

Can these functions be used for conditional formatting?

Absolutely! You can use the MONTH and WEEKDAY functions to set conditions for formatting, such as highlighting weekends or certain months.

Are there other date functions in Excel I should know about?

Excel has a wide range of date and time functions, including YEAR, DAY, NOW, and DATE. Each serves a different purpose and can be combined for more complex date-related tasks.


The MONTH and WEEKDAY functions in Excel are simple but powerful tools for anyone working with date-related data. By understanding how to use these functions, you can streamline your workflows, improve your data analysis, and save yourself a significant amount of time. Whether you’re planning projects, analyzing trends, or just organizing your personal schedule, mastering these functions is a step towards becoming an Excel power user.

Remember, the key to effectively using these functions is to ensure your dates are in a format that Excel understands. Once that’s squared away, the possibilities are endless. Happy Excel-ing!

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