3 Steps to Design a CV/Résumé in Microsoft Word (MS Apps)

3 Steps to Design a CV/Résumés in Microsoft Word (MS Apps)
Image credit @thebalancecareers.com
Most recently, job seekers are handling the preparation and design of their CV/Résumés themselves. A majority, once learnt and mastered the basics of Microsoft word, believe they can just hit a few keys and get their CV printed. And if care is not taking, you’re more likely going to come out with the unprofessional design. Whereas this can hurt your job search beyond your imagination.

In my last years as an education consultant and a desktop publisher, I’ve been forced to advise a few graduates to retouch their CVs before printing. If you should visit Techie Konsult for the printing of a Résumé on email or flash drive, the first thing I would consider is how I can quickly retouch your design to make things look modern and more appealing.

Hence, you will find this guide helpful in preparing something that will give you confidence each time you’re dropping your credentials on job hurting.

Using MS to Design a Professional CV/Résumé

Having covered a series of common errors to avoid while preparing your CV, I will take you from the very first word to the last while getting your CV done.

First, look at the Résumé below.

Sample of Resume/CV designed with MS Word

Do you like it?

Well, it’s simple and cool.

At my office, we can design CVs far better. For the purpose of this lesson, that one is acceptable.

Let’s see how we did that.

1. Type all your details first

The first rule in publishing is to “type first and edit later”. Most graduates will start editing and designing from the first word. That’s wrong.

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Type out all the details to be on your CV first.

Have you?

Here, a few keys you will need are cap lock, spacebar, enter, comma and full stop.

You will need Cap lock to type words in upper case (capital letters), space bar to give space among words and enter to move to the next line.

Don’t forget – don’t edit yet.

2. Do the editing and Arrangement

At this stage, we have to check all possible omissions, spelling mistakes. Then, we have to format our fonts (how the words will look like).

Speaking of the fonts, leave your font to the default i.e Calibri. This is the font that will be active as soon as you launch Word 2007 or newer versions.

Now, you need the “tab key”. This is very important because it will help you to perfect the arrangement.

A common mistake I’ve seen on CVs is an imperfection in the arrangement of the words. Where they’re supposed to use the “tab key”, they use the “spacebar“.

“Spacebar” is to create a single smaller space between two words. Whereas, “tab key” creates longer space.

Look at the Résumé above again. The spaces between Name of the institutions and dates of attendance were created with a few clicks on tab key. The same happened to the spaces between words under the Bio-Data.

3. Formatting the look of Your CV

Select the Names on the CV and click center alignment. The keyboard shortcut for this is Ctrl+E

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The result will look link this.


Select details of your contact and use centre alignment.

The result will look like this.

Address: Oba Olatunde Falabi Estate, Ijegun Lagos, Lagos State
Email: [email protected], Phone Numbers: 08163179000 or 08132225444

Now, go to your shapes. To do this, click Insert tab on the Word Menu. Then, click Shapes in the illustration group. Now, click the line shape.

Come back to the heading and contacts already formatted to draw the line. Draw it below as shown in the sample CV above.

To ensure the line is straight, hold the shift key on the keyboard while drawing the line.

Now let’s format the line further.

  1. To thicken the line, click on it. This will activate your format commands at top of the page.
  2. Now click on shape outline, then, weight. There, click 1 pt. This will thicken your line
  3. Then, click on the line again and hit Ctrl+D on your keyboard. This will duplicate the line.
  4. Shift or drag the line perfectly below your first line. Make sure they are balanced.
  5. Then, follow the steps we took to thicken the first line for the second line too. This time, increase the line to 2¼ pt. This will thicken the line second line as you can see in the example above.

Now for our headings; Bio-Data, Work Experience, Education etc, we simply turn on cap lock while entering those words. That’s why we had them all in capital letters.

The next thing is to select each of them and hit Ctrl+B. This will make them bold.

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For the arrangement of all the words under each heading, use the tab key to separate them. Strictly use tab key all through. This is the best way to get the correct and fit arrangement.


Nothing is as good as sitting you down while guiding you on how to prepare and design your CV. However, if you can take a closer look at the CV sample above and follow my guide, you’ll come out with something merciful rather than messy.

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