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Types of Resume

The first step when writing a resume is to choose an appropriate format.  Format refers to the type of information you include, and the order in which it appears.  There are  three basic resume formats:  chronological, functional and a combination of the two.

Chronological
The chronological resume is the most common format.  It lists your most recent job, and continues down to earlier jobs.  This format is effective when you have a continuous employment history, and your past experience relates directly to the positions for which you are applying.

Functional
The functional format highlights your skills and accomplishments rather than work history.  At the top, it lists things you are good at doing, then summarizes the jobs you have held at the end.  The functional format is effective when you have the skills, but not much experience, or if you have gaps in your work history.

Combination
The combination resume uses aspects of both the chronological and functional formats.  It lists your jobs from most recent to earliest, but it also highlights key responsibilities and/or accomplishments for each.  This combined approach is effective when you have held several jobs and can point to significant accomplishments or skills.

  • What, in your background, do you want to emphasize?
  • What do you want to "play down"?
  • Which resume suits these choices?

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