How to Use MS Word Templates: A Step-by-Step Guide

Using MS Word templates can significantly streamline your document creation process. Whether you’re working on a resume, newsletter, or report, there’s a template for nearly every need. In essence, you simply choose a template that fits your project, customize it to your liking, and voila – you have a professional-looking document in a fraction of the time it would take to start from scratch. After selecting and customizing your template, you’ll have a completed document ready for use or further editing.


Let’s face it, starting a document from a blank page can be daunting. Whether you’re a student, a business professional, or someone in between, the thought of organizing and formatting a document can be overwhelming. This is where Microsoft Word templates come in. They are pre-designed documents that serve as a starting point, complete with formatting, styling, and sometimes even content that you can customize.

Why is this topic important? For starters, it saves time. Instead of fiddling with margins, fonts, and spacing, you can jump straight into what matters most: your content. It’s also about consistency. Templates ensure that your documents look uniform and professional, which is especially important in a business or academic setting. And let’s not forget about the inspiration factor – sometimes looking at a well-designed template can spark ideas for your own content. So, who is this relevant to? Anyone who uses Microsoft Word! Whether you’re crafting a cover letter, creating a business proposal, or setting up a flyer for a bake sale, templates can make your life easier.

Step by Step Tutorial: How to Use MS Word Templates

The following steps will guide you through finding, choosing, and using a template in Microsoft Word to create a document.

Step 1: Open Microsoft Word

Open the Microsoft Word application on your computer to begin.

Once you’ve opened MS Word, you’ll be greeted with a variety of options. If you’re using a recent version, the start page will display a search bar for templates at the top and a range of template options below it.

Step 2: Access the Template Gallery

Click on “File” and then “New” to access the template gallery.

In the template gallery, you’ll find categories ranging from ‘Business’ to ‘Education’, each filled with various template options. You can also use the search bar to find something more specific.

Step 3: Select a Template

Browse through the templates and select one that fits your needs.

As you click on each template, you’ll be able to preview it. Think about your project’s purpose and audience when choosing a template. This will ensure it not only looks good but also serves its intended function.

Step 4: Customize the Template

Click on the template and then select “Create” to open it in a new document for customization.

Now the fun part begins! You can change anything in the template – from text to images to colors. Don’t be afraid to make it your own. Templates are just a starting point; they’re meant to be modified.

Step 5: Save Your Document

Once you’re done customizing, save your new document.

Remember to save your document with a new file name to avoid overwriting the original template. It’s also a good idea to save periodically while you’re working, just in case.


Time-savingTemplates cut down on the time you would otherwise spend formatting a document from scratch.
Professional designYou get access to professional-looking designs without needing any graphic design skills.
ConsistencyUsing templates ensures that your documents have a consistent look and feel, which is particularly beneficial for branding or academic work.


Limited customizationSome templates may not allow for extensive customization, which can be frustrating if you have a specific vision in mind.
Overused designsPopular templates run the risk of being overused, which could make your document look generic.
Compatibility issuesOlder versions of Word might not support some of the newer templates, leading to formatting issues.

Additional Information

Alright, so you’ve got the basics down, but let’s talk about some additional tips for using MS Word templates. First, don’t be afraid to mix and match elements from different templates. Like the header from one but the bullet points from another? Go ahead and combine them! Another tip is to pay attention to the content included in the template. Some templates come with sample text that can be a fantastic starting point or even serve as inspiration for your writing.

When it comes to customization, the sky’s the limit. But remember, sometimes less is more. You want your document to be eye-catching, yes, but also legible and clear. So, before you go font-crazy or color-happy, consider the readability of your final product.

Lastly, templates aren’t just for documents; they can be used for things like labels, calendars, and even envelopes. The wide range of templates available in MS Word means there’s likely a template for almost any document you need to create.


  1. Open Microsoft Word
  2. Access the Template Gallery
  3. Select a Template
  4. Customize the Template
  5. Save Your Document

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I create my own template?

Yes, you can create a custom template by setting up a document to your liking and then saving it as a Word template (.dotx) file.

Are templates free to use?

Most templates within MS Word are free, but some premium templates may require a purchase or a Microsoft 365 subscription.

Can I share a customized template with someone else?

Absolutely! Just save your customized template and send the file to the other person. They can then use it as their own template in Word.

Can templates be used for collaborative work?

Yes, templates can be a great starting point for collaborative work. Just make sure all collaborators have access to the same template.

Do templates work on all devices?

Most templates will work across different devices, but there might be some formatting differences depending on the version of Word you’re using.


In the world of document creation, MS Word templates are like a secret weapon. They simplify what can often be a complex and time-consuming process, freeing you up to focus on the content rather than the design. Whether you’re a student looking to impress with a polished report, a business professional aiming to streamline your document workflow, or just someone looking to make a snazzy event flyer, templates can elevate your documents to the next level.

Remember, the goal is to work smarter, not harder, and MS Word templates are one way to do just that. So next time you’re staring at a blank page in Word, take a detour to the template gallery – you might just find the perfect starting point for your next masterpiece. And who knows, with the time you save, what else you’ll be able to create?

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy