If you want to get noticed and stand out to hiring managers, whether you’re writing a new resume from scratch or polishing an old one, you need to use the right format. But what exactly is the difference between the various formats, and which is the best resume format to use? Here’s what you’ll need to know:
Chronological vs. Functional Resumes
There are two common types of resume formats:
- Chronological Resume Format: This is where you start with the most recent work experience and work your way backward. This is the most popular resume format, and with good reason: hiring managers prefer it.
- Functional Resume Format: Rather than listing a reverse chronological work history, this format focuses on skills and abilities. It’s easy to fall into the trap of using this format to hide career gaps and/or job-hopping. Hiring managers, on the other hand, are astute and will notice the tactic right away. In fact, using a functional resume format is strongly discouraged.
What does a chronological resume entail, now that we’ve ruled out the functional resume format?
This is the best resume format to use because it is straightforward and simple for hiring managers to understand:
- Your name, email, phone number, and city/state are all listed at the top.
- A one- or two-sentence branding statement that highlights your distinct background.
- Your work history is in reverse chronological order, with bulleted points under each job title describing your role and accomplishments.
- Your educational background, including the school you attended, the year you graduated, and the degree you earned.
- Any other relevant information, such as volunteer work, technical skills, or other abilities that a potential employer should be aware of.