WORKDAY is an advanced Excel formula used to calculate the end date for a task or project, given a start date and a specified number of workdays.


The purpose of the WORKDAY formula is to facilitate project management and task scheduling. It allows users to skip weekends (Saturday and Sunday) and optionally, any custom holidays when calculating the end date of a task.


The syntax for creating a WORKDAY formula in Excel is:

=WORKDAY(start_date, days, [holidays])


The WORKDAY formula uses three parameters:

  • start_date: This is the starting date of the task or project. It’s a required parameter.
  • days: The number of workdays for the task. It’s also a required parameter.
  • holidays: An optional list of any dates that should be skipped over, such as public holidays.


The WORKDAY formula returns a date value that represents the end date of a task or project after the specified number of workdays.

Usage Notes

The WORKDAY formula only considers the date portion of a datetime value. Also, by default, it skips over Saturday and Sunday, treating them as non-working days.


The WORKDAY formula is available in all versions of Excel, adding to your spreadsheet calculator abilities.

Example #1

If your project begins on 2023-06-01 (cell A1) and lasts for 10 workdays, use:

=WORKDAY(A1, 10)

This formula will return 2023-06-15, which is ten workdays after the start date.

Example #2

When you need to account for holidays, input them in the ‘holidays’ parameter. If you have a holiday on 2023-06-08 in cell B1:

=WORKDAY(A1, 10, B1)

The formula will return 2023-06-16, accounting for the holiday.

Example #3

If the start date contains time information, such as 2023-06-01 08:00:00 in cell A1:

=WORKDAY(A1, 10)

Excel only considers the date and will return 2023-06-15.

Example #4

For invalid dates, like “Hello” in cell A1:

=WORKDAY(A1, 10)

Excel will return a #VALUE! error, signaling the input is not a valid date.

Example #5

If you want to calculate the start date given the end date and the duration, use WORKDAY with a negative ‘days’ value. If the end date is 2023-06-15 in cell A1:

=WORKDAY(A1, -10)

This will return 2023-06-01, ten workdays before the end date.

Tips and Tricks

Remember that the WORKDAY formula automatically excludes weekends. If your workweek differs, consider using the WORKDAY.INTL formula instead.


The WORKDAY formula cannot handle text that isn’t a valid date and will return a #VALUE! error.

Common errors and solutions

The #VALUE! error occurs when the start_date parameter is not a valid date. Ensure that your date inputs are valid.

Best Practices

Always check your date data to ensure it’s valid. Use the holidays parameter to avoid counting specific dates as workdays.

List of Related Functions

Related functions for Excel include:

  • WORKDAY.INTL: Similar to WORKDAY, but allows for custom weekend parameters.
  • NETWORKDAYS: Calculates the number of workdays between two dates.
  • NETWORKDAYS.INTL: Similar to NETWORKDAYS, but allows for custom weekend parameters.

Frequently Used with the Formulas

WORKDAY is frequently used with other date-related formulas such as DATE, DAY, MONTH, and YEAR.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What happens if the ‘days’ parameter is a decimal?

If ‘days’ is a decimal, Excel rounds it down to the nearest whole number.

Q. Can WORKDAY handle negative values for ‘days’?

Yes, WORKDAY can calculate a start date when given an end date and a negative value for ‘days’.

Q. How does WORKDAY handle time values?

WORKDAY only considers the date part of a datetime value. The time part is ignored.

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