Updated by Tina Sieber on 1 March, 2017.
One of the little touches I have always found useful as a viewer and an occasional presenter is the display of time and date on a PowerPoint slideshow. It’s an essential option if you are using handouts too. Thankfully, this is very easy to accomplish and will make your presentation complete.
Without counting the seconds, let’s dive straight into the method.
Add the Current Time and Date to a PowerPoint Slide
First, open your PowerPoint document and got to the View tab on the Ribbon. Choose the Normal view. Select the first slide of the slideshow.
Next, click on the Insert tab and go to the Text group. Click on the little Date and Time icon which gives you options to insert the current date and time into the PowerPoint document.
Clicking on the Date and Time icon opens up the Header and Footer dialog box. Using the two tabs (as in the screenshot) we can add the date and time values to our main slides. Likewise, we can add the same details to Notes and Handouts, which we usually print out and give to the audience as reference material.
The next few steps are pretty simple – choose the date and time format from the drop-down. Selecting a Fixed time acts as a marker that lets you know when the slide was created. It is obviously constant. The Update automatically selection displays a dynamic time that takes the current time from the system clock. The options are the same for the Notes and Handouts tab. (Preferably, don’t show the date and time on the title slide).
Remember: Each time you open or print the presentation, PowerPoint will update the date and time. PowerPoint does not continuously update automatically but only at the start of the slideshow.
Finally, select Apply to All and you are done.
Add the Current Time and Date According to the Language
Another useful addition is using date and time formats according to the culture of the audience you are showing the presentation to. Do this if you work in a global company or present to a specific audience. To permanently set your preferred format, implement the following settings.
First, choose File > Options > Language. The Options dialog gives you a lineup of additional languages to edit your document.
Expand the drop-down for Add additional editing languages and select the language(s) of your choice which you want to use for the date and time. Click on Add. Press OK to confirm and exit the PowerPoint file.
Reopen the presentation and position your cursor where you wish to insert the date. Take the usual route of selecting the Insert tab and then clicking on the Date and Time button.
If you are using something like a text box to insert your date and time, you will get a dialog box like this:
If you are adding the date and time as a footer, then the usual box appears. In both cases, select the date and time format, and pick the language from the drop-down. After you OK the changes, the date and time is entered in the language of the country chosen.
Date Your PowerPoint Presentations
Using the date and time with your PowerPoint slides is a simple final step to follow before you give or distribute a presentation.
When you’re just starting out with your presentation design, have a look at these cool PowerPoint templates to save some time. And be sure to avoid these design mistakes in your presentation. You might also want to improve your slides by visualizing data with Excel graphs.