When To Use A Functional Resume
If you have one long gap or multiple employment gaps in your resume in the past five years, are a first-time worker or are drastically changing career paths, then consider a functional resume. By highlighting skills that transfer across industries and your most relevant accomplishments, you can emphasize the right qualifications for the position you want. This also prioritizes the information thats most important to a recruiter rather than focusing on a work history that doesnt align with the job.
In some cases, a functional resume might be too limiting. If you have some experience and few or no gaps in your employment history, a combination resume might be the right choice.
Resume Format : Functional Resumes
Functional resumes focus more on relevant skills than work history. While the chronological format highlights work experience with detailed summaries of the achievements within each position, the functional format focuses on the applicants skill set relevant to the role you are applying for.
Whats The Best Resume Format
The best resume format is, hands-down, the reverse-chronological format.
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Write A Standout Resume Headline
A resume headline is a concise, one-line description of who you are as a candidate. A well-written headline can grab a recruiters attention and encourage them to take a more detailed look at your qualifications.
Your headline is a short but powerful addition to your resume, often the first thing a recruiter reads. Take advantage of the opportunity to make a strong first impression. Its also another opportunity to include a specific job title or keyword that might be used to sort your resume in the ATS.
Why Its Called Executive
The Executive template is the Bentley of the professional resumes. No other resume comes close to the refined and stylish format of the executive. Other templates cant stand up to the exclusive feel that the Executive template gives off. The sophistication of the alignments and the use of vertical and horizontal line breaks have no equal in the resume world.
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Combination Resume Example And Template
Combination resumes are a mix of the chronological and functional resume formats. They provide a chronological list of ones work history, but they also have a section that focuses on different types of skills. This format shows employers both your skills and your experience. It’s a good choice if you’re changing careers or if you have a varied but steady work history.
With this type of resume, you’d start with a section to show your skills. The next section would show your job experience, followed by your education. You might also include an objective or summary at the beginning. You can or review the example below.
Juris Doctor , anticipated 2021Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, Cleveland, OH
Associate of Applied Business in Paralegal-Legal Assisting, 2013Rhodes State College, Lima, OH
Certified E-Discovery Specialist , 2017
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.
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What Is A Resume Format
The phrase resume format is often a confusing one, since different sources use this term to refer to different/multiple things. In the most basic sense, a resume format is the type of structure your resume has depending on the order in which resume sections are presented, how the employment history section is written and which sections are given the most emphasis. For example, in one type of resume format, the skills section may be overly emphasized, while in another, your work history will take center stage.
How Long Should My Resume Be
Your resume should be approximately two pages long. If it is substantially longer, eliminate information that isnt relevant to the role or industry. For instance, look back at the key skills and attributes required for the job in question and then review your resume are you using valuable space to describe skills, attributes and responsibilities from roles that dont match up to the job in question? If so, remove this content or, at the least, simplify your language. On your resume, you must get to the point, so dont use ten words to say something you could say in five.
On the other hand, one page may suffice in certain circumstances. The main thing to keep in mind when youre writing your resume is that you must be able to demonstrate and articulate your skills, experience, and future potential to the reader. If you can do that well in one page, thats great. However, the average length of a resume is usually around two pages.
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List Your Professional History With Keywords
Write your professional history section in reverse-chronological order. Start with your most recent job and provide a short description including the company name, time period in which you were employed, your job title and a few key achievements during your time at the company. You might also include relevant learnings or growth opportunities you experienced while employed there.
When listing your professional history, you should keep a few best practices in mind:
- Use numbers to measure your impact, when possible. Including specific numerical achievements can help employers understand your direct potential value to their company.
Example: Developed new process for requesting supplies, reducing fulfillment time by 10%.
- Use keywords from the job description. Similar to your skills section, you should also include information from the job description in your job history bullets. For example, if the job description mentions the importance of meeting sales quotas, you could include information about how youve met or exceeded quotas in past roles.
Example: Achieved goal of reaching 250% annual sales quota, winning sales MVP two quarters in a row.
Follow the same process for other work experiences. If you do not have extensive professional history, you should also include internships and volunteer opportunities following the same format.
Should I Include An Objective Or Summary Statement
Using a resume summary is the best bet for most situations.
Objectives are not useful in terms of the value you are going to provide to the job, whereas summaries show exactly what you are offering to the recruiters.
Using a resume objective could be more effective if you are changing careers, have no paid work experience, or are seeking an entry-level position.
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+ Essential Resume Formatting Tips
How To Fill The Gap Left By The Covid
The first thing to know is that COVID-19 has disrupted the career plans of thousands of students and you’re not alone. As a result of the pandemic career-boosting activities such as work experience, internships and volunteering have been postponed or cancelled. If this has left you worrying about the corona-shaped gap on your CV let us put your mind at rest.
Employers understand the challenges caused by lockdowns only too well and they won’t expect you to have completed a period of work experience in this time. That said you could still demonstrate to potential employers how you used this time wisely – showing yourself to be a proactive, dedicated and resilient candidate.
You could mention:
- details of online courses or Massive Open Online Courses you’ve undertaken or webinars or online events you’ve attended
- the acquisition of new skills, such as learning a language or learning to code
- volunteering work such as checking in on and shopping for vulnerable neighbours or caring for young siblings or elderly relatives
- charity work – perhaps you got involved with fundraising or raising awareness of a particular ogranisation.
- new hobbies such as starting to vlog, picking up a sport, learning to cook or setting up a community book club.
Remember – you’ll need to relate these to the job you’re applying for so focus on the skills these activities taught you and how/why they’d be useful.
Read our example cover letter explaining a gap in your CV.
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Top 10 Tips For Picking A Resume Template
If there was one resume template that worked for everyone well, our website would be much, much smaller. But the truth is, a variety of templates are important to help capture the uniqueness of each candidate. And as beautiful as each resume template might be, a hiring manager doesnt want to see the same one 100 times in a row. At the end of the day, the choice comes down to you. Its important to evaluate the level of professionalism in your industry and at the company youre applying to and decide if a modern, stylish resume or a more traditional one would be in line with those standards.
Beyond that, its about highlighting the experiences and abilities that make you unique. In some industries, a pop of color or a friendly photo can do the trick. In others, youll have to rely on your expert writing to sell yourself as a top candidate
Which Resume Format Is Best For Students
Again, the answer is reverse-chronological.
While a functional resume can help you emphasize your skills more than work experience, it comes with 2 serious problems:
Worried about the fact that you dont have any work experience?
Heres the thing – for most entry-level positions or internships, youre NOT required to have any work experience.
The whole you need work experience to get work experience saying is a lie. No recruiter expects an entry-level candidate to have any experience!
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Smash Resumes Simple Two
File Format: AI
Need a little more space? This two-page template injects a more personality with golden accent colors but is still professionaleven if you need to go on for longer. You can make this option even better by nixing the line graphs in the Skills and Language sections, and sticking to text instead. Since the ATS might read your resume straight across you should adjust what text you put in the left column so that the text still makes sense if read this way.
Highlight Education Training And Certifications
The next section of your resume should highlight the most relevant education, training and certifications you have. This could include your major and minor in college, professional licenses and certifications, certificate courses taken in college and additional professional training. If you earned honors, exceptional grades or scholarships, you can also highlight this information in this section.
Example education, training and certifications resume section for freshers:
Licensed Health, Life and Annuities insurance agent New York University, New York, NY
Bachelor of Science in Healthcare Administration
Awarded 2016 2019
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How Should A Resume Look In 2021
In 2021, simplicity is key. Your resume should be easy to read, use a neatly arranged resume design, and get to the point.
Avoid the busy details commonplace on resumes of the early 2000s, such as graphics, images, or charts. Additionally, your resume experience section should only go back to the past 10 to 15 years, and remain directly relevant to the position you want to fill.
How Long Should A Cv Be
A standard CV in the UK should be no longer than two sides of A4. Take a look at our example of a chronological CV for inspiration.
That said one size doesn’t fit all. For example, a school leaver or recent graduate with minimal experience may only need to use one side of A4. Although not used as often, a three-page CV might be needed for those in high-level roles or for people who have gained a lot of experience or worked in multiple jobs over the last five to ten years. For example, some medical or academic CVs may be longer depending on your experience. While it’s important to keep your CV concise you should also avoid selling your experience short.
To save space only include the main points of your education and experience. Stick to relevant information and don’t repeat what you’ve said in your cover letter. If you’re struggling to edit your CV ask yourself if certain information sells you. If it doesn’t cut it out. If it’s not relevant to the job you’re applying for delete it and if it’s old detail from ten years ago summarise it.
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What Is The Difference Between A Serif And A Sans
The difference between serif and sans-serif fonts is in the names themselvesserif fonts have decorative elements known as a serif, and sans-serif fonts do not.
Serif fonts that you can use on a resume include:
Sans-serif fonts you can use on a resume include:
For resumes, we generally recommend using a sans-serif font, instead of a serif font. Sans-serif fonts are easier to read on digital devices, especially smaller screensand nowadays, many recruiters are reading resumes on the go or on their phones. Sans-serif fonts are not only easy to read when printed, but they also are less taxing to read at smaller sizes on smaller screens. Sans-serif fonts also convey a modern and fresh look that help prevent your resume from looking dated.
Include An Education Section
- Relevant coursework
- Grade point average
- Participation in clubs or organizations
- Leadership positions held
- Awards, achievements or certifications
When writing your education section, you should include the name of the institution, dates of attendance and your degree or area of study. If you are applying to mid or higher-level positions, you might remove all but the name of your school and dates of attendance to make room for more relevant professional experience on your resume.
If you have certifications or licenses that are relevant to the job description, you can include them in this section as well. To save space, you can leave off any credentials that are not directly related to the requirements of this job.
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Add Your Name And Contact Information
The top of your resume should include the following information:
- Email Address
- LinkedIn profile URL
It might seem obvious, but job seekers sometimes forget a key piece of contact information in this section. Double check and make it as easy as possible for recruiters to contact you for a job interview.
Best Resume Formats For Experienced Professionals
The chronological resume format is also the best option for experienced professionals applying for a job within the same field of expertise.
It makes it easier to get the message across that you are already an expert.
But then again, you should not miss out on the opportunity of doing something different if there’s an option.
Using a combination resume layout can be more useful if the job is skill-based.
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How To Choose The Best Resume Format
Now that weve covered all 3 of the common resume formats, youre probably wondering which ones the right for you.
Heres what we recommend:
In 99% of the cases, wed recommend going with a reverse-chronological resume format.
In 2021, its the most common and useful format:
- Applicant tracking systems can read it without any problems.
- All recruiters and hiring managers are familiar with this format.
- Whether youre a recent graduate or a senior professional, its the easiest format to work with.
The only case wed recommend going with a functional or combination resume is if youre a career changer, and even then, its still quite risky.
True, a combination or hybrid resume will help you emphasize your skills over work experience. However, both of these resume formats are not really that popular in 2021.
Theres a good chance that the applicant tracking system wont be able to read your resume and automatically discard it – after all the time you put into creating the resume!
At the same time, recruiters might just not be familiar with these resume formats, or think that youre just trying to hide the fact that youre not experienced, and disqualify you based on that.
So, rule of thumb – when in doubt, go for the reverse-chronological resume.
Looking for CV writing tips instead? Here’s our full guide on how to write a CV!