Send your resume as a PDF, not a Microsoft Word Doc

PDF vs. MS Word Resumes2017 is here and with it comes the annual uptick in hiring as well as New Year’s resolutions. In this blog, we’ll explain why sending an Adobe PDF of your newly-written professional resume can improve your chances of securing an interview. PDF and MS Word (.doc) files are provided to each of our clients as part of the Resume Writing Service that we offer.

1. What are PDF files?

Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) files were developed as a means to exchange files between computers that often used different or incompatible versions of software. They help to ensure that an Apple/Mac user and a Windows user can view the same document without worrying about rendering or display issues. When you’re sending a resume to an employer, a PDF file will always display correctly on their computer while a MS Word file may have a few quirks.

2. What’s the difference between a PDF & Microsoft Word file?

The simplest way to explain the differences between a Word and PDF file is: “MS Word Files can be edited while PDF files cannot be edited.” In reality, it’s possible to edit a PDF file with specialized software. However 99% of users do not have access to such software. It’s also important to note that not all PDF files are equal. If you create a PDF version of your resume from a MS Word file, that PDF file can be scanned by applicant tracking systems. In addition, a PDF build created from a MS Word file has text that can be copied and pasted into an email or a regular plain text file.

The other common version of a resume PDF file is a document created from a hard copy on a scanner. While it is possible to extract the contents of a resume file after scanning the hard copy, it’s not practical. This type of file most likely cannot be scanned by applicant tracking systems. When sending a PDF, make sure it’s created from a Word file.

3. Why do employers request Microsoft Word files?

An employer may specially request a MS Word version of your resume because previous applicants have sent in PDF versions of their resume that were created from a hard copy and a scanner. If an employer can’t load the resume into their applicant tracking system, they can’t anlayze your resume. By requesting a MS Word version of your resume, the employer will always have a document that can be loaded into their database with minimal issues.

4. Which should I send – PDF or Word?

We recommend sending the PDF version of your whenever possible, provided the PDF of your resume is built from a MS Word file. If you can copy and paste text from your PDF file, you’re in good shape.

5. How do I create a PDF version of my resume?

The easiest way to create PDF version of your resume is to simply go to the “Save As” function within Microsoft Word Choose “PDF” from the drop down list. See below:

Saving a Word Resume as a PDF Document

As we enter the peak hiring season, we recommend sending a PDF version of your resume. I hope this blog posting was both informative and enjoyable to read. If you run into any technical issues, feel free to contact us for assistance. For additional questions on PDF and Word resume files, please call 561-303-5515 or email [email protected]. Happy job hunting!

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