Using a Word resume template is a great way to make your resume a highly editable and customizable document. Since Microsoft Word allows you to edit your document for each job you apply for, this is an appealing option for many job seekers. In addition, MS Word is a file format that is frequently requested by recruiters.

LiveCareer offers a selection of the best resume templates for Word. Available in an array of styles — Modern, Creative, Traditional, Simple, Basic and Professional — all can be downloaded in three different file formats, including Word.

Here, we will help you decide whether you should use a Microsoft resume template by explaining the pros and cons of choosing one of our premium or free resume templates for Word.

When to use a Microsoft Word resume template

Microsoft Word is a desirable format for many job seekers because of its user-friendly features, including the ability to track changes, move text around, create both numbered and bulleted lists within the document, and more. However, Microsoft resume templates aren’t for everyone.

When you are applying for work, you should download your resume templates in a Word document if:

  • The job post explicitly asks for a resume in a Microsoft Word file format.
  • You want the option of editing your resume.
  • You plan to personalize a single resume for multiple roles.
  • You’d like recruiters to have the ability to take notes on your resume.

If these scenarios don’t describe you, don’t fret. LiveCareer offers templates that can be downloaded as a PDF or in simple text, too, making it easy to choose the file format that best suits your needs. For job seekers who want the option of editing their resume after downloading it, download one of our word resume templates for free and customize your resume for every job to which you apply.

Free resume templates for Word


Premium resume templates for Word


Pros and cons of using a Word resume template

Downloading your resume format in Word is often a solid choice for job seekers. Microsoft Word is one of the preferred file formats for recruiters. Job seekers also like this format because creating a resume in Word makes it easy to edit and personalize for other roles. However, some job seekers find that writing and formatting a resume in Word can be tricky.

For one, while Microsoft Word does offer resume templates, it does not have a resume builder, which means all of the writing is left up to the job seeker. Plus, when sharing a resume created in Word with a recruiter who uses a different version of the software, some formatting elements could be lost, or inadvertent changes could be made to the document.

LiveCareer’s Resume Builder offers the best of both worlds, making it simple to create professional resume templates in Word. Download your resume as a Word document, make the changes you want, and then save it as a PDF to create a “fixed” file format that will preserve the formatting and design of your resume and prevent accidental changes from being made.

Below, we outline the pros and cons of using a Microsoft Word resume template to create your next resume:

  • Microsoft Word resume templates are easy to edit, making them great for job seekers who plan to customize a basic resume for each job they apply to in their job search.

  • Using a resume builder to create a Microsoft Word resume template allows you all of the flexibility of MS Word without the hassle of designing a header and formatting your resume yourself.

  • When you choose a Word resume template, you have the option to choose whichever resume format is right for you. Just decide between the chronological, functional or combination formats and start writing.

  • Using one of LiveCareer’s Microsoft Word resume templates allows you to skip the headache of formatting altogether. Our templates manage it for you while giving you the freedom to customize your document by changing the font, colors and more.

  • Creating a resume in Word from scratch can be tedious and time-consuming.

  • Creating a resume in Microsoft Word can make it difficult to create functional or combination resume formats.

  • Formatting elements like font, margins and text alignment can be tricky when working in Microsoft Word. An eagle eye is required to maintain consistency throughout the document.

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Does Microsoft Word have free resume templates?

Yes. Microsoft Word does offer free templates. However, the company does not offer a resume builder, so all the writing has to be done from scratch. When you use LiveCareer’s premium and free resume templates for Word, you have access to our professional Resume Builder, which offers a variety of benefits, including:

  • Step-by-step guidance on how to craft all five sections of your resume.
  • Prewritten content suggestions, written by our team of professional resume writers, which you can use as-is or customize them to suit your needs.
  • The ability to change fonts, colors and more to make your Microsoft resume template your own.
  • An option to download your resume template in Word, Simple text or PDF file formats to meet the requirements of every employer.

Which format do most employers prefer for resumes?

While some employers may request a resume Word document, many prefer applicants use a PDF. The reason? If the recruiter has a different version of Word than the one you used to create your resume, some formatting or design elements could get skewed. This can make it difficult for hiring managers to decipher your credentials.

Using a PDF is the best way to avoid that possibility. A PDF is a “fixed” file format, which means that you can be assured that what you see on your screen is exactly what the recruiter will see on their end.

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