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Should You List Microsoft Office on Your Resume Anymore?

Mmm, maybe not, unless...

Woman writing her resume and wondering whether to include microsoft word proficiency

Image courtesy of Yoel Peterson

In 2020, listing your proficiency in Microsoft Office might feel a little...obvious. It’s like saying you can ride a bike—most employers expect that you’ve learned and mastered it (except some of us still haven’t mastered riding a bike as an adult...cough cough, me). 

So, should you still list it?

You can leave it off unless the job description asks for it. Listing Microsoft Word or even Microsoft Office as one of your skills isn’t going to crush your chances of landing a job and cause the hiring manager to scoff and immediately toss your resume in the bin, it just doesn’t add much to your case. Nevertheless, some job postings still list Microsoft Office as a requirement, and there are ways to make your experience seem super impressive.

Your cover letter is the perfect vehicle for explaining your Microsoft Office skills. Let's say you saw an opportunity to organize important company data and consolidated dozens of important Word files into a single, organized Excel—that shows you’re a self-starter, a team player, and quick on your feet. Excel (or Google Sheets) proficiency is a coveted skill in many industries today as we rely more and more on large amounts of data. Talk about off your awe-inspiring Excel skills in sorting data, creating advanced math functions, formatting uniformly, and more. 

What if you aren’t well-versed in Microsoft Office?

No worries, it’s time to put on the training wheels. Creating documents, presentations, and spreadsheets are common responsibilities in most office jobs nowadays. Luckily, there are tons of online videos, courses, and tutorials to help you master Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, Excel, and more—the whole shebang. Check out one of these resources to further develop your skills:

If you have a little more free time on your hands right now, start exploring Microsoft and get to know the icons (save, cut, copy, spelling and grammar, etc.). 

Create a new document and spend some time playing around in the application—you won’t have to worry about accidentally deleting an extremely important, classified company document right now. 

Read more: How to Talk About Your Weaknesses in a Job Interview

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By Cara Hutto

Contributor

Cara Hutto is a freelance writer and the former assistant editor at InHerSight. Her writing primarily focuses on workplace rights, job searching, culture, and food, and she holds a bachelor’s degree in media and journalism from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

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