LEFT Function

Returns the leftmost characters from a text string.
Sample Usage
LEFT("Hello World!", 3)
Syntax
LEFT(
  • text
  • [
    num_chars
    ]
)
  • text
    The text that you want to return a portion from.
  • num_chars
    —[optional]
    Starting from the leftmost character, the number of characters to return. If a number isn’t provided, only the first character is returned.
Usage Notes
  • With right-to-left languages, LEFT will return the rightmost characters instead.
Examples

This example references the following sheet information:

  Item Number Transaction Total Units Sold Ship Date
1 C001 1,170.00 78 02/15/19
2 C002 1,491.00 42 03/20/19
3 C003 812.00 217 02/27/19

Given the table above, here are some examples of using LEFT in a sheet:

Formula Description Result
=LEFT("Smartsheet", 5) Returns the 5 leftmost characters from the text string “Smartsheet”.  Smart
=LEFT([Item Number]2, 3) Return the 3 leftmost characters from a text string in the “Item Number” column on row 2. C00
=SUMIF([Item Number]:[Item Number], LEFT(@cell, 3) = 
"C00", [Transaction Total]:[Transaction Total])
Sums the values in the “Transaction Total” column for rows where the value in the “Item Number” column returns the 3 leftmost characters equal to “C00”. Rows 1, 2 and 3 apply. 3,473.00