How to Write a Resume on a Mac

By Nicole Vulcan; Updated July 05, 2017
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When you need to create a word processing document, such as resume on your Mac computer, you may have the option to use Microsoft Word for Mac or Apple's Pages, depending on the software you have installed on your computer. Before you choose a resume template from Word or Pages, the first step is think about your work experience and the nature of the position for which you're applying.

Resume Prep

If you have extensive experience doing the work that the new position includes, use the more traditional, chronological resume format. That type of resume lists your most recent jobs near the top of the page in reverse chronological order. If you're applying for a job that you haven't done before – but for which you still have the skills to qualify – use a skills-based or "functional" resume, which highlights your best skills or accomplishments near the top of the page. You'll know what skills are best to list for an individual job by closely reading the job posting, and then pulling out the required or desired skills the employer wants that apply to you. In either case, make some notes about your most recent jobs, the duties you performed, and the skills required for the job.

Microsoft Word Templates

Launch Word for Mac from your Mac's Dock and then select "Resumes" from the list of Templates that appear along the left hand side of the window. If none of those appeal to you, check out the Microsoft Office "Templates/Resumes" Web page. Once the template is downloaded, it should appear among your templates when you launch Word. From the Templates window, click on the one you want to highlight, and then select your desired colors and fonts. If the employer has specified certain fonts or font sizes in the job posting, choose those here. Then click "Choose." If you decide to change the font or font size after you've begun working on the document, that's fine too; simply highlight the text within the document, and change the font from the "Fonts" panel. The formatting of the document should remain the same.

Entering Your Information

Now fill your personal information into each pre-formatted field. Double-click on a section to highlight it, and then simply start typing; the generic template information will disappear and be replaced by your text. Enter your name, address, skills, jobs, dates and other information into the correct fields. To save the file, click "File," and then "Save As," and then name the document and click "Save." Word will automatically save it as a Word-based DOCX file – which tends to be the preferred file type for business, and for online resume databases. Be sure to review the document carefully so that none of the generic information provided by Word is left in the document. Have someone else review the document before you print it.

The Mac Alternative: Pages

If you're using Pages, follow a very similar process to create your resume. Launch the application, choose from the resume templates listed along the left hand side of the page, and click "Choose." If you want another template, try the iWork Community website, which offers several additional templates for download. Pages will automatically put your name into the "Name" field, as well as the phone number, if you have one saved to your user account. Double-click on a section to highlight it, and then start typing your personal details to delete the generic information. Highlight sections to drag and move them, or even delete them altogether. When you are done, click "File," and "Save As." Pages will save the document as a PAGES document, unless you specify otherwise, and it will allow you to save a copy as a Word document by clicking the check box in the "Save As" window. To save the document as plain text, click "File," and then "Export," and then choose "Plain Text."

About the Author

Nicole Vulcan has been a journalist since 1997, covering parenting and fitness for The Oregonian, careers for CareerAddict, and travel, gardening and fitness for Black Hills Woman and other publications. Vulcan holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from the University of Minnesota. She's also a lifelong athlete and is pursuing certification as a personal trainer.