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Best Formats For Resumes

Work History With Dates

How to Write The BEST Resume in 2022 – NEW Template and Examples INCLUDED

On a combination resume, the work history section lists current and previous jobs in chronological order. It differs from the functional resume because it includes dates of employment.It should also include the name and location of the employer, in addition to a job title that can be understood by anyone.

The combination resume works well for anyone, and employers like this format because it focuses on skills and experience but doesnât hide employment history.

Let’s review

A chronological resume:

  • Includes job titles, dates of employment, and a description of the job in terms of accomplishments and measurable tasks
  • Is most often done in reverse order, with your most recent job listed first
  • Works best for job seekers who have a steady employment history or previous employment that is related to the position being sought

A functional resume:

  • Groups applicable skills into functional skill categories
  • Highlights applicable skills and experience without revealing a lapse in employment
  • Works best for job seekers who have gaps in their employment history, little previous work experience, or recently changed careers
  • Is disliked by many hiring managers

A combination resume:

  • Highlights functional skills and experience without hiding employment dates
  • Works best for job seekers who have required skills from a variety of jobs, are trying to change careers, or have had a steady work history
  • Is a favorite among hiring managers and recruiters

How To Choose A Resume Format

Some resume formats will work better than others for your situation. For example, if you have a gap in your resume, a history of job-hopping, or a career path thats taken some strange twists and turns, a functional resume might be the best choice because it emphasizes skills over linear job experience.

On the other hand, if you can show a clear progression toward your current job opportunity, a chronological or combination resume might be the best option.

Your choice will depend on your career level, work experience, and job history. The job description might also make a difference. So, be flexible when choosing a resume format.

If you create several versions of your resume, including a comprehensive, a targeted, and a short teaser resume, you’ll have the flexibility to market your credentials quickly and easily.

Which resume format is best for you? Well break down the advantages of each type and offer detailed resume layout examples to help you make your decision.

Keep page length in mind as you format your resume. One to two pages is fine for most situations three or more pages is relevant for senior-level, government, and academic positions.

How Do I Format A Resume Template

To make formatting a resume easier, we recommend following one of the three resume formats: chronological, functional and combination. This top resume format guides you on organizing your information strategically based on the level of experience and the number of skills you have.

The best resume format is the chronological format which will benefit candidates whove had a long and extensive career. It emphasizes your work history and organizes it in reverse-chronological order, hence the name.

The functional format instead puts the focus on your resume skills. This way, your work history has less importance in your resume, making this format ideal for individuals with no previous work experience.

As the name suggests, the combination format combines qualities from both chronological and functional resumes. It levels the playing field between skills and work history, so candidates with limited experience but plenty of skills can benefit from this type of resume.

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When To Use A Functional Resume Format:

The functional format delivers information about your skills like no other format can. Its de-emphasis of job history and educational achievements keeps that skill focused right on target. As a result, it can effectively hide sketchy employment history.

Itâs not, however, a format well-suited for anyone who wants to demonstrate career advancement. You also donât want to rely on it too heavily if you donât have the right kind of skills for the job youâre seeking, since it declares that lack of qualifications right away. Finally, it doesnât really provide the best format for people with absolutely no experience.

Finding The Best Resume Format Examples

Best Resume Formats for 2020 [3+ Professional Templates]

Of course, reading about it is one thing, but seeing how these resumes look is another. If youre interested in seeing examples of how these resumes look in person, head on over to our How to Make a Resume 101 article. Just make sure, no matter which format you choose, that youre targeting it for the job youre applying to.

We also have to give some credit where credit is due. Our pals over at NovoResume have put together some really great content about resume format over on their site, along with a few great examples. This will be a great companion to the information we have already taught you here!

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Whats The Best Resume Template

Theres no best resume template. Each job-seeker has their own skill-set and qualifications, so theres no singular template that magically fits the mold for everyone.

To find the best template for you, first consider what format is right for your professional background, as well as what resume design suits your needs.

Our team designed each resume template to meet the requirements of different types of job seekers. From entry-level applicants to experienced professionals and even executives, we aspire to have the perfect template for every candidate.

If you cant find a resume template you like, Google also provides a variety of .

Should You Use A Chronological Resume Format

Most job seekers could make good use of a chronological resume, from recent graduates to seasoned executives. Its an especially natural fit for anyone whos pursued a relatively linear and consistent path without any major pivots or big gaps.

There are two major advantages to this format. Because the chronological resume is so common, recruiters and hiring managers are familiar with the format and know how to read it. They can quickly and easily see how you built your career. This resume format also tends to pass through applicant tracking systems more smoothly than other formats.

The downside is that if youre changing careers, have had a complicated or varied path, or are returning from a long period away from the workforce, the chronological resume could highlight those gaps and make it difficult for those reading it to decipher what skills you bring to the table that would make you a strong candidate for this particular role.

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Why Are These The Best Resume Formats

These three resume formats are some of the best options because theyre easy to read and the most likely to be processed through an ATS without critical errors.

Recruiters often have to review many resumes for a single open role. They can read a resume in a standard format more easily and thoroughly because they know where to find the information theyre looking for. For example, if a role requires a specific skill, a recruiter will look for it in your skills section listed either above or below your work experience. They have a limited amount of time to spend reviewing each resume, so they may move on and assume you dont possess the qualification if it takes too long to find the right information.

Also, most applicant tracking systems will perform a more accurate review of your resume if the format is simple, straightforward and follows a few basic rules. The three resume formats discussed in this article mostly adhere to these best practices, though some ATS may have difficulties scanning a functional resume, and can help ensure that your resume is successfully processed through an ATS review.

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What Goes Into A Functional Resume


A functional resume contains the following components, roughly in this order:

  • Name and contact information
  • Summary statement
  • Skills/areas of expertise, typically grouped into a few subcategories relevant to the role, with related accomplishments and details below each skill or group of skills
  • Work history including the role, company, location, and dates
  • Education
  • Additional skills, hobbies, interests, activities, volunteer experience, awards, and/or any other relevant section

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I Have Years Of Traditional Work Experience

If you’ve worked in similar fields and have a consistent employment history, you might be tempted to go with a combination/hybrid format for your resume to help you stand out from other applicants. Unfortunately, this style may not pass through ATS, and it’s very difficult to pull off correctly.

Whether you’ve only been working a few years or for decades, the reverse-chronological resume format is going to be your best choice. While recruiters are looking for proof of steady employment over the years, they’re also looking for job progression. They want to see if you’ve changed jobs because you’ve acquired additional skills or if you’ve simply moved laterally from one job to the next. With the reverse-chronological resume, you’re able to tell a story of job growth that potential employers want to see.

Furthermore, the reverse-chronological format makes it easier for recruiters to see your specific work accomplishments so that they know what you can bring to the position. Your short sections of skills can be easily verified with this format. You’ll also avoid the potential red flags that could prevent a recruiter from actually looking at your resume.

Things To Keep In Mind When Choosing A Resume Format

Firstly, choose the format thats correct for you. Secondly, add your content to build a compelling document. Thirdly, once its complete, follow the submission instructions specified.

  • Think about the extent of your experience. This will help you to choose the resume format that is right for you.
  • Think about your audience. Your resume may go through an applicant tracking system initially. That means the chronological format is most easily read without errors. To make sure you include the right content, look at this best-practice advice.
  • Dont use gimmicks. Use a design that looks professional, not garish. Pick your fonts, colors, and any graphic elements to look classy. A template produced by a professional designer is a great starting point. Choose from classic, modern, or elegant styling. We have a large selection of templates for you.
  • Do you include a headshot? This is a matter of personal choice. Sometimes a headshot is specifically asked for, in which case definitely add one. Our templates include variations to let you make the choice that is right for you. If you want more information on how to choose the right template, check out this article.

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Resumes For Executive And Management Positions

Management and executive resumes highlight supervisory experience and business management. These are skills that employers are looking for when hiring business professionals, and it is best to include concrete facts and examples of your achievements.

You might also consider developing a curriculum vitae and have that available as well. CVs offer a focus on awards, publications, teaching experience, and so on, which might be valuable during a job search in a creative field.

Chronological Pros And Cons

Resume Format 2020 Examples
    • 1st skill and quantifiable description or accomplishment.
    • 2nd skill and quantifiable description or accomplishment.
    • 3rd skill and quantifiable description or accomplishment.
  • Work history: Unlike the chronological resume above or the combined resume, functional resumes downplay your work history and share minimal information. This resume reduces the amount of data you share to emphasize your transferable skills and training, making it the ideal choice for highly trained workers with limited or sporadic work experience.

    This parsed-down section will only list your former job titles, employers, and place of employment. Avoid adding any dates of employment or job-related descriptions.

  • Education: Like the contact section above, this section wont vary much between the different formats. Add all relevant information like your degree level, alma mater, and date of graduation.
  • Optional sections: If you have extensive, job-related skills or experience through trade certifications, hobbies or publications, create a dedicated section to this information. If not, fold them into your skills, education, and work history sections.

This resume format is also less common than the chronological resume and should be used with caution. Recruiters may review this resume with the assumption that youre trying to exclude unfavorable details of your employment history .

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Resumeways Free Template 1100010

This template keeps things short, elegant, and easy to read. The colored graphic at the top adds a nice design element to stand out, especially against a straightforward layout that places your most recent job experience at the top and education and skills below. Just be sure to delete the icons next to the contact information and move it to the body of the resume.

Why Should I Use A Resume Template For My Job Application

A resume template simplifies the job-seeking process. The best template provides you an attractive, well-formatted resume layout that conforms to industry standards. Simply fill out your template and start sending it to employers.

Additionally, using a premade template guarantees that you have an applicant tracking system friendly resume, and that its easy to read.

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Best Resume Templates And Types

Related: How to Format a Resume for Success in 5 Easy Steps

In this video, we show you how to craft the perfect resume in five easy steps so recruiters can find you.

If you’re starting the process of getting a new job, you are likely considering updating your resume. That’s the most practical first step in your job search and ensures all your most recent skills and experience are accounted for on your resume. For job seekers, having an updated resume is invaluable, but knowing what is the best resume template to use can be a challenge. In this article, we’ll explore types of resumes with resume template examples.

Does Resume Format Matter

Best Resume Format | Tips for writing an AWESOME Resume | ATS Resume Format

Yes, resume format does matter. Your resume is all about advertising your most valuable qualities as a candidate. In most cases, your most valuable attributes are related to your work experience and relevant achievements, so you should use the chronological resume format.

However, if you have resume gaps or are changing careers, the right resume format may be a combination or even a functional format to help you highlight your strengths while downplaying some of your weaknesses as a candidate.

In a competitive job market, the right resume format can give you the edge you need to land an interview.

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When To Use A Chronological Resume

A chronological resume is a good choice for anyone whose employment history shows a consistent, advancing career path. For example, you might select a chronological resume format if youve spent the past several years in the same industry and each role youve held was more senior than the last. Its also often used by people who are applying to a position in the same or similar field to the majority of their work experience.

However, if you have multiple gaps in your employment history, youre looking to change careers or your work experience is heavily varied, you may want to consider a functional or combination resume.


  • Additional information

What You Should Include In Your Resume

  • Contact information and personal details

At the least, it should have your name, phone, and email. Include a website address if you have one but an actual address is not needed. You may consider adding and working visa information, but not personal details like age or marital status.

  • Objective, summary or introductory paragraph

This should be no more than a paragraph to introduce yourself and outline what sort of role youre after. You can specify whether you want a full- or part-time role, or mention your goals, ambitions, or even desired work environment. Personal attributes, like having a great attitude, might also good to mention.

  • Experience

For a chronological format, start with your most recent role and work backward. Keep it brief with the business, followed by the city or country, and the dates you worked there. Instead of listing what kind of tasks you did, talk about what you achieve with qualitative evidence where possible.

  • Relevant skills, education or certifications

The key here is relevance, so include skills, studies, or certification that is relevant to the role. Many people include the name of their high school, but this usually isnt necessary.

  • Relevant skills, appearances or awards

If you do have relevant skills, take the time to list them. You never know what skills recruiters are looking for, and you dont want to miss an opportunity. If youve been part of a panel or written an article about your industry, be sure to include it.

  • Additional skills

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Should You Use A Functional Resume Format

Functional resumes are sometimes recommended for job seekers who dont have any recent work experience , those who are making a major career change, and folks whose work history is all over the map.

But should you really use a functional resume? The answer in most cases is probably not, according to Muse writer Jaclyn Westlake, a recruiter and former HR manager. Recruiters are often suspicious of functional resumes, and might assume that an applicant using one is trying to hide something.

Recruiters and hiring managers are sifting through a lot of resumes, so your goal as a job seeker is to make it as easy as possible for them to read and understand yours. Since the functional resume is far less common than the typical chronological resume and includes only the bare bones of your work history toward the bottom of the page, it can be harder to parse.

Besides the fact that recruiters and employers are distrustful of them, functional resumes become a garbled mess when they pass through the ATS, says Amanda Augustine, career expert for TopResume. Augustine urges job seekers to avoid the functional resume even if theyre making a pivot. Youre better off using the professional summary section of your combination resume to highlight your relevant skills, rather than resorting to a functional resume format.


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