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The Importance of PDFs

When you send us documents to add to your website, we often ask you to send them as a PDF - but why?

The short answer is that certain file types can only be accessed if you have a specific piece of software downloaded, whereas PDFs can be opened by anyone, regardless of what programs they do or don't have because PDFs just open in your internet browser.

To give an example, .ppt or .pptx files are the file type your computer assigns to anything you create in Microsoft PowerPoint. These files can only be accessed if you have Microsoft PowerPoint downloaded. Parents and other members of the public who are viewing documents on your website may not have Microsoft Office on their device and so will be unable to access these documents.

However, if it’s a PDF then a website user simply needs access to an internet browser to access the document on any device (such as a computer, mobile phone or tablet). All devices come with an internet browser built in, such as Safari or Google Chrome.

Therefore, we aim to upload every document on your website as a PDF where appropriate, to ensure everyone can access all the information available without the risk of anyone accidentally or intentionally editing the document.

But how do you make PDFs? And how can you convert a file into a PDF?

It is very easy to make a document in the program of your choice and convert it into a PDF once it is finished, you just need to know what to do.

Please watch the video below to learn more about how to save a document as a PDF. The example provided in the video is Microsoft Word, but these same steps will work for other Microsoft Office programs like PowerPoint, Publisher and Excel too. Similar steps should also apply for other programs too.

Please note that the part of the video where it states your PDF will open in Adobe Acrobat will not apply to you if you do not have Adobe Acrobat installed. Instead, your PDF will open in your internet browser, or in a different program you have which is able to open PDFs.


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