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In some scenarios (such as using select by attributes or a definition query) a string operation might be necessary, but if the data is a number type it does not work. This article provides a sample of how to cast the number field to a string for a SQL operation.
This code casts the number field "SQLNUM" as a text field, which can then be used in a text operation.
CAST( "SQLNUM" AS CHARACTER(12))
CAST( "SQLNUM" AS CHARACTER(12)) <> "SQLTEXT"