Aug 07, 2018 - 10:52 AM
When asked by USA Today whether or not candidates should submit resumes in PDF or Word format, career coach Alex Durand said that candidates should send all application documents in PDF format. His reasoning? It is easy for a competitor to alter a Word document. Though he has a point, most employers and experts agree that Word reigns supreme. But why?
If you're wondering why your resume should be in a Microsoft Word document, the answer is three-fold. The number one to use Word is because PDF documents don't often translate well in Applicant Tracking Systems. ATS is a system that scans documents for keywords and scores applications based on how relevant a person's skill sets are to the position. ATS have a hard time reading PDFs and even cause whole parts of documents to disappear.
The second greatest reason to use Word over PDF is because an employer may not have the same software as you and therefore, would be unable to open your file. If you do not have Word, consider sending your resume from another computer, or, as a last resort option, as a .RTF (rich text file).
Finally, you should always use Word if a recruiter asks you to do so. Failure to do so can result in an immediate rejection because of your inability to follow directions.