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How do I make a PDF?

What is a .pdf?

Most of us make our job search documents (resumes, cover letters, etc.) in Microsoft Word and save it as a .doc (the extension the computer uses to mark the file as a word document). A .pdf basically takes an image of your document and saves it. It is no longer a Word document once it is converted. Depending on how you save the file, it generally cannot be modified.

Why make a .pdf?

Did you know that if you attach your resume as a word document and send it to a potential employer, it is possible for them to see all of the recent edits that you have done? There is a feature called “track changes” where the reader can see each change. Do you really want that potential employer to see what information you took off last time you edited it?

Also, sometimes people/companies do not update their computer programs for a long time. Think about it. You have to buy a license to put the software on each computer in the office. That can get expensive! Especially for small offices or companies in rough economic times. This is very important because sometimes older versions of Word will not open up files made on newer versions. A .pdf ensures that the reader can open the file and view/print it.

One final thought. Sometimes when we copy/paste our resume into an email (this is not the preferred method for most hiring managers, FYI) the formats sometimes do not transfer. A .pdf keeps your formats consistent and exactly how you want them. You spent a lot of time working on the information and formatting. Don’t throw all of that hard work away just because the reader’s computer does not recognize your font or style formats!

What do I need to view a .pdf?

All you need to view a .pdf is Adobe Acrobat. It comes in version that range from free for personal use to professional editions. You can download a free version at: http://www.adobe.com/downloads .

How can I make a .pdf?

.pdf’s are easy to make! If you have a paid version of Adbobe Acrobat, you can convert documents, such as Word into a .pdf with one click. If you do not have the paid program, you can find lots of programs on the internet that do the same things. Two such programs are CutePDF and doPDF. Disclaimer: Be careful when downloading programs like this, though! You should make sure that the program comes from a reputable organization. If you are unsure about the download, just look for another one. Your computer’s health is important when you are looking for a job!

In short, PDF’s can be very useful for your job search. If you need help with PDF’s, please do not hesitate to let us know!