How to List Microsoft Office Skills on a Resume

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated January 12, 2023

Published November 5, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

When creating your CV, listing relevant qualifications can increase your chances of getting the job you want. Microsoft Office is a suite of desktop applications for creating documents, spreadsheets, databases, and presentations. If you're searching for a job, listing Microsoft skills on your CV can impress employers and demonstrate that you can perform various office software tasks efficiently. In this article, we explain why it's important to list Microsoft Office skills on your CV, discuss resume skills and competency levels, and show CV examples of how to include Microsoft skills.

Related: Basic Computer Skills (Plus Ways to Highlight Them)

Why list Microsoft Office skills on a CV?

Including Microsoft Office skills on a CV is essential because many companies use Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Teams, Publisher, and Outlook to complete daily tasks. As these software programs are common for documenting information, delivering presentations, and processing data, it's also important you highlight which specific tasks you can complete using them. Review the job description of the role you applied for and determine what Microsoft Office skills you can expect to use if hired. Then, creatively include these qualities on your resume.

Related: How to Learn Microsoft Office (With Free Online Courses)

Examples of Microsoft Office skills to include on your CV

Here are Microsoft Office programs and the respective skills you can list on your CV:

Microsoft Word

Microsoft Word is a program for creating professional documents. You can use it to prepare your CV and draft memos, reports, and letters. If you have experience using this application, you can highlight your Microsoft Word skills in:

  • creating designs, labels, forms, and charts for printed materials

  • formatting tables documents

  • setting page layouts

  • proofreading letters and emails

  • building templates

  • including graphs or charts to reports

Microsoft Excel

Microsoft Excel is an application for creating spreadsheets and organizing data. You can also use it to perform calculations. Here are skills you can list to demonstrate your competency with Excel:

  • creating spreadsheets, unique formulas, and tables

  • analyzing, grouping, and validating data

  • using pivot tables

  • formatting conditional cells

  • creating and editing charts and graphs

Microsoft PowerPoint

Microsoft PowerPoint is an application for developing engaging presentations. If you have experience using this Microsoft product, here are skills you may want to consider including on your CV:

  • creating interactive slideshows and presentations

  • inserting media

  • inserting, embedding, and linking content

  • using advanced timeline

  • broadcasting and sharing slideshows

  • formatting slides using aesthetics

Microsoft Access

Microsoft Access is a program for managing databases and storing information. Many companies use it as a database management system (DBMS). Here are some skills you might want to write if you're competent with Microsoft Access:

  • creating, designing, and editing databases

  • calculating controls

  • sorting and filtering data

  • creating advanced queries

  • establishing relationships between tables

  • using visual basic applications (VBA) and structured query language (SQL) within Access

  • transferring data into an SQL server

Microsoft Outlook

Microsoft Outlook is an information management application. It enables you to send and receive emails, manage calendars, and track tasks. Here are skills to show your competency with Microsoft Outlook:

  • creating, scheduling, and delegating tasks

  • planning meetings

  • sharing and configuring calendars

  • configuring email settings

  • flagging and prioritizing emails

  • auto-replying to emails

Microsoft Publisher

Microsoft Publisher is an application for desktop publishing. Included in recent versions of Microsoft Office, Microsoft Publisher enables you to explore your creativity and develop graphics. You can include Microsoft Publisher on your CV if you're skilled in the following:

  • creating and customizing tables, brochures, handouts, and newsletters

  • editing images and graphics

  • customizing page sizes, graphics, boarders

Microsoft OneNote

Microsoft OneNote is an application for taking notes and collaborating with multiple users. Here are qualities to show your competency with Microsoft OneNote:

  • recording, organizing, and retrieving notes

  • drafting and sharing images

  • converting handwritten notes to typed text

  • uploading recordings

Competency levels for Microsoft Office CV skills

Here are competency levels to help employers gain more insights into how well you can apply your Microsoft Office skills:

Fundamental

This means you have some work experience with a Microsoft product but limited training. With this skill level, you can typically create, save, and delete documents. Having fundamental competency also means you can recognize basic icons and navigate the Microsoft Office product.

Basic

This competency level means you understand how the software works. For Microsoft Excel, basic competency may indicate you can create and format spreadsheets. Similarly, this skill level often shows you can write and edit texts in Microsoft Word and create basic presentations in Microsoft PowerPoint.

Related: 5 Basic Excel Skills and How to Include Them on Your Resume

Proficient

This typically means you have comprehensive knowledge of a Microsoft Office product. Proficiency in Microsoft Word typically shows you can create templates, set page layouts, edit and format functions, and include images and drawings. In Excel, it often means you can work with basic formulas, IF statements, charts, and pivot tables. Similarly, being proficient in PowerPoint typically indicates that you can create templates, animation, and charts.

Intermediate

Intermediate competency means you have a moderate understanding and experience using a software application. Creating interactive slideshows in Microsoft PowerPoint and using formulas for calculations are typically intermediate tasks. Similarly, personalizing business emails in Microsoft Word requires intermediate skills.

Related: A List of Intermediate Skills in Excel to Include on Your Resume

Advanced

Understanding how to use OneNote and creating databases in Microsoft Access typically require advanced skills. In Microsoft Word, this skill level involves tracking changes, switching between landscape and portrait pages, and creating a table of contents from start to completion. Similarly, customizing animated presentation in PowerPoint is typically an advanced-level task. In Excel, navigating sparklines, using power queries, and using Vlookup require advanced skills.

Related: Advanced Excel Skills: Definitions and Examples

How to list Microsoft Office skills on your CV

Follow these steps to include Microsoft skills on your CV effectively and impress hiring managers:

1. Reflect on your skills

Create a list of all skills you have and check that they're relevant to the expected role. For example, if you're applying for a data clerk position, knowing how to organize data and use databases are relevant skills to list. Similarly, if you're applying for an administrative position, you might focus more on skills related to using Microsoft Outlook and Word.

2. Determine your skills' competency

Evaluate your ability to perform the Microsoft Office skills you list on your CV. Consider including the skills you're at least proficient in to leave a good impression on potential employers. You also want to ensure that your assessment accurately reflects how well you can use the Microsoft Office product. For example, if you attended a comprehensive boot camp to learn how to use Microsoft Excel, you may be proficient with the application.

Read more: Skills Assessment Tests: What You Need to Know

3. Include your skills in the skills or experience section

You can use bullet lists when creating a section for your Microsoft Office skills and indicate your competency. Align your Microsoft Office skills with your previous duties when including them within your CV's experience section. Regardless of how you choose to mention Microsoft skills, aim to describe practical examples of how you use them.

4. Consider certifications in Microsoft Office products

While certifications aren't typically a requirement, you can convince employers of your Microsoft Office skills by earning them. Listing these qualifications on your CV can also position you as a more competitive candidate for the position. Here are common Microsoft Office certifications you may earn:

  • Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA) certification: If you're looking to start a career in desktop infrastructure or cloud computing, this certification can help you learn how to use Windows Operating Systems and Microsoft Office.

  • Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) certification: You can expect to take an exam in a specific Office Program to earn this certification.

Related:

  • Types of Microsoft Office Certifications (With Skills)

  • What Is Microsoft 365 Certification? (With Benefits)

Example of how to include Microsoft Office skills on your CV

Review the following examples to guide you on how to include Microsoft Office on your CV:

In a separate skills section

This example shows how to include Microsoft skills in a section you create for them:

Relevant Microsoft Office skills

  • Microsoft Excel: advanced skills using formulas, functions, and pivot tables.

  • Microsoft Word: proficient with Microsoft Word to write documents and set page layouts.

  • Microsoft Outlook: advanced skills using features such as calendar and sending out-of-office emails.

  • Microsoft PowerPoint: intermediate skills in creating slideshows and editing animations.

Within the experience section

This example shows how you can include Microsoft Office skills when discussing previous roles:

  • Created Excel pivot tables to compile key company reports and monitor the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.

  • Used Microsoft Excel macros to automate processes and increase the team's productivity by 14%.

  • Used the mail merging functionality in Microsoft Word to improve the speed the company was able to convert a mailing campaign into a list of 14,000 people by 26%.

  • Used Microsoft Excel VLookup to sort a database of 14,6890 records for vital information.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions, or organizations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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