Formatting Changes after Uploading a Word Document with Images

Occasional Contributor

I have been using Teams to hold virtual office hours with my students in my Business and in my Technical Writing Class. This has been working when the documents are simple and straight text. However, my student uploaded a document with images, and when I opened this in teams and then in Word Online, I could tell that the formatting is askew: the Pictures are out of place. Then I opened the document in Word and the formatting is correct. I've had this problem before with the Online MS apps. Why can't Teams and Word OnLine maintain the formatting of such documents?

13 Replies

Hello @mhnicholas you can read this to understand the difference between Word Online in teams and Word.

Hi @mhnicholas ,


Its just a limitation of Word Online. There are certain things that just don't format correctly and there is also a functionality deficiency in Online as per the previous posted link. I assume with images it is to do with the layout and the conversion between a word document and HTML. 


This issue is something I usually make users aware of as part of training. 



@Andrew Hodges so what you are telling me is that if any of our users actually touch the doc while it is in Sharepoint it gets totally screwed up. I always tell them to go to the application, but once the formatting gets messed up, it stays messed up. 

@mhnicholastry installing the MS OFFICE chrome extension and then sign in, after opening the extension,

the formatting issue will disappear.

Worked for me!!



This does not work. The MS OFFICE extension in chrome does NOT fix the formatting integration problems. It only allows simple cut, copy, paste functions to work properly. There are numerous formatting errors in documents created offline then opened in MS WORD online. This is a huge problem for WORD users and I'm astonished that Microsoft would allow this problem with document formatting to persist. I am inclined to begin converting my documents to Google Docs just to streamline my processes.




I have found that setting an assignment asking the student to create a document and then uploading it, or having them download the file, editing it, then uploading, is probably the best way to preserve formatting of documents within Teams classroom.

@AndyTres That doesn't preserve anything. I'm supposed to upload documents for my course and nothing works properly, documents randomly don't show up. Then the formatting is completely different once uploaded, this makes no sense. Why would having pictures in one place in a word document suddenly change to somewhere else in a random jumble of letters and pictures, the moment it's uploaded? Makes it impossible to hand work in.

@SquishySamson you are right... we have resorted to saving the edited doc as a pdf before uploading to Teams...


@mhnicholas I know this is two years too late, but I was having the same issue and have had some success with controlling formatting using tables. The Teams version of Word does not allow images to be Square Wrapped. Using tables to place images in positions alongside text holds them in place and retains the layout.

This does not, however, get MS off the hook. MS Teams viewer should not be messing up MS Word documents, and require submission as a PDF to solve. 

But if you upload to Teams as a PDF you cannot use the review features in word, right?

@mhnicholas Correct. If you load up a PDF you lose all editing facilities. The bug bear in Word appears to be images and Text Wrapping. As long as you use tables to place images in a Word doc rather than text wrapping, they will hold their shape when you upload as Word.



My guess is that this is still an issue and not fixed by MS? Anyone know? 



@TracyF330 sorry I haven't explored this for a while.