What Format is Right for My Resume?

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Whether you’re creating a new resume from scratch, or polishing an existing one, it’s vital you use the right format if you want to get noticed and stand out to hiring managers. But what’s the difference between different formats – and which is the best resume format to use? Here’s the information you need:

Chronological vs. Functional Resumes

There are two common types of resume formats:

  • Chronological Resume Format: This is where you list your most recent work experience first and then work backwards. This is the most common resume and for good reason: hiring managers prefer this approach.
  • Functional Resume Format: This format focuses more on skills and abilities, rather than listing a reverse chronological work history. It can be tempting to use this type of format to hide career gaps and/or job hopping. However, hiring managers are savvy and will quickly pick up on the tactic. In fact, we strongly recommend against using a functional resume format.

So now that we've ruled out a functional resume format, what does a chronological resume entail?

This is the best resume format to use because it’s simple and easy to follow for hiring managers. It includes:

  • Your name, email, phone and city/state at the top.
  • A one (maximum, two) sentence branding statement highlighting your unique background. 
  • Your work history listed in reverse chronological order, with bulleted points under each job title explaining your role and relevant achievements.
  • Your educational history, including the school where you went, the year you graduated and your degree.
  • Any other pertinent information, such as volunteer experience, technical skills, or other abilities that are important for a potential employer to know about.

Need more help with your resume?

Check out our resume templates for some great examples. Or simply give us a call. We know the best resume formats to use in 2018, all so you can stand out to employers and get a call for an interview. To get started or learn more, contact us today at 832.930.7378.