Resume Format PDF or Document: How to Choose the Best Resume File Format

resume format pdf

Every applicant has a question whether they should send their resume as a resume format pdf or simply a word file.

You might understand that there is a big difference between PDF or Document file format.

If not, do not worry.

We will let you know how to choose a file format for your document.

Yes, the accurate file format of a resume definitely compels a hiring manager in order to open it.

Which One is Better: Word or PDF

Although choosing a file format seems a very simple task, but it is as much important as making a resume.

For a single job, a company receives about 300 resumes. Thus, the software is used in order to sort those resumes.

This software is called ATS (applicant tracking system).

ATS sorts the resume based on the keywords mentioned in the job description. This is how ATS ranks resume based on relevancy.

If you have put all things right in your resume such as skills, your resume will get the first rank.

Therefore, you need to tailor your resume perfectly by adding keywords to it to ensure the selection of your resume.

Do you understand the meaning of the above lines?

If not, let me make you cognizant of it.

Well, this simply means that 100’s of resume are those which are not going to face by the recruiter.

The hiring manager will choose only top-ranking resumes for the interview.

Where Does File Formatting Work for your Resume?

ATS software cannot read the special formatting. For instance, some older versions of ATS software were not able to read resume PDF format.

Here, you need to make sure that you have an ATS-friendly resume template.

Scanning through ATS

Certainly, most of the large companies use some sort of software. And, this software scans your resume.

You might have filled any application form online and then attached your resume. That is where ATS software works.

Other than this, a large firm with many employees will process candidates’ resumes through ATS.

However, small enterprises are less likely to use this software, but this trend is changing at a very fast pace in this day and age world.

The strategy would be the same as past the software in every case:

The resume matches the job description.

Best keywords for the resume.

Formatting of the resume to avoid rejection of it.

Before further proceeding, you need to check whether your PDF file if fine or not. For this, perform copy and paste on a text. If your computer does not face any problem in reading that text, then there is no problem.

How to Choose Resume File Format: PDF or Word

So, which one is the best resume format. Word or PDF.

No one is better than the other. The selection of a file format actually depends on how a company wants you to apply for a job.

So, your first task comes to check whether the company has any demand for the guidelines related to the format of a resume.

If the job description gives you some specific instructions, then follow them and that is all you have to do for the format.

However, if you are not given any kind of instructions, then save your file in multiple formats so that you can pick a demanding format at any time and send them.

Here are the Merits and Demerits of using PDF and Word file format.

 Merits of Resume Format PDF

 Resume format PDF  can be opened by anybody on their computers.

It ensures that formatting will not get mess up when anybody opens it.

More creative freedom.

Demerits of Resume Format PDF

Some ATS software has a problem in reading  resume format PDF.

For ATS, it is difficult to read graphics or images in a resume.

Merits of Word Resume Format

Most of the companies prefer documents plain and simple.

ATS software can easily read a word file format.

Demerits of Word Resume Format

Formatting can get messed up when a resume is opened.

Sections of the resume can be easily changed or deleted.

It does not have creative flexibility.

Why it is Important to Send your Resume Format PDF

Sending your resume as a PDF file is a great idea because this format will open at the hiring managers’ screen the same as you have made it.

But, if a recruiter tries to download a word format resume, it can mess up the formatting as rearrangement of words or accidental removal of the text.


It says that saving a resume format PDF would be a good idea other than saving as a word document. But if you have instructions,  simply follow them. If you want to make a resume online then visit our site.

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