When to Use a PDF

There are several reasons that PDFs are most appropriate for resumes, CVs, cover letters, and letters of recommendation:

  • They can be viewed on almost any device, using built-in apps or the free Adobe Reader.
  • PDFs are not easy to change like Word documents, so reference letters are more credible.
  • The appearance is the same across users and devices.

Using a PDF in these situations comes across as more professional than a Word document.

On a Mac, you can always use File–>Print/PDF to save to a PDF. On Windows 10 you can print to PDFs by choosing the “Microsoft Print to PDF” printer. Many programs also have the ability to “Save as” or “Export to” a PDF.

Check out our tips on creating accessible PDFs.