Chronological, Functional or Combination Resume Format: Pick the Best One (with examples)

  • Skillroads
  • Blog
  • Chronological, Functional or Combination Resume Format: Pick the Best One (with examples)

 Probably writing a resume is not the best thing you used to do. It takes a lot of forces and strengths to make a really good one that catches the recruiter’s attention and emphasizes all your skills. However, the mission is possible if you’re familiar with the different types of resumes. Resume format may differ due to your working background, proficiency, type of work and skills. Make resume formatting isn’t that hard and we prepared a list of 3 types of resumes, so you may take the one that would present your strongest sides to the hiring manager.

choosing_resume_formats

1. Chronological resume

What is a chronological resume?

This is the most common and standard resume format and telling the truth, many employers typically prefer this type to others as it's easy to see what jobs you have held and when you have worked at them. A chronological resume focuses on your work history first as the most relevant point for hiring managers. Obviously, your jobs are listed in reverse chronological order with your current or most recent job with brief explanations of each job. 

When should you use a chronological resume?

A chronological resume format is the most common resume type, which suits those people who have an extensive work history that is in the same line of work as the job for which they are applying. It’s a safe choice for virtually all job seekers. 

When should you avoid using a chronological resume?

The chronological resume does not work well for career changers. You might have a lot of work experience in different industries but a chronological format demands related and smooth working history. As well as career changes, chronological resume doesn’t like gaps in employment and will only emphasize these issues.

Chronological resume structure

A chronological resume often includes an eye-catching career summary at the top. Then you should define chronology of your previous work experience and make it as clear as possible - it’s the main part of such resumes. Education, certifications, and special skills are also included in this type of resume but are listed after your work experience section.

Have a look at a chronological resume example to get a clearer visual understanding. 

chronological_resume_example

A proper reverse chronological resume order should be as follows:

  1. Contact information
  2. Resume summary or resume objective
  3. Work experience
  4. Education
  5. Skills
  6. Additional Sections

2. Functional resume

What is a functional resume?

The functional resume format allows you to take the pressure off your work history and focus more on your skills and abilities. That’s why it’s also called the skills-based resume format. The focus is shifted from job titles and dates to your actual relevant skill set.

When should you use a functional resume?

It is typically used by job seekers who are changing careers, who have gaps in their employment history, students with less working experience or people, whose work history is not directly related to the job. If you are looking for a job in creative industries, where your portfolio matters more than your resume, go ahead and use creative functional resumes. 

When should you avoid using a functional resume?

Through, it’s a great one for teens, students, and graduates, who lack work experience, but have their education, internships, projects, volunteering or campus work on their back, it’s still the most tricky resume type. The functional format might not work as it just throws your job history out. If you’re a fresher looking for a summer or entry-level job – it’s your choice to show up. But if you already have some achievements under your belt, your experience section would be presented only by a tiny list of your past employers at the bottom of the resume, and that’s not what you need.

Functional resume structure

No worry, if you don’t have a perfect work experience with a treasure trove of relevant skills and competencies. You’re not the only one and there are numbers of strategies you can employ to cover up gaps on your resume. To get an idea of how a functional resume can conceal your work gaps, you must understand the structure of current resume format.

Take a look at the functional resume example and let it become clear to you. 

functional_resume_example

Keep in mind the correct functional resume order:

  1. Contact information
  2. Resume objective
  3. Skills Summary
  4. Additional Skills
  5. Work Experience
  6. Education

Remember, even if you don’t have much work experience, you should still link your skills with either your academic achievements or part-time jobs and volunteer experience. The functional resume can be an ideal resume format for freshers as its ultimate goal is to make the hiring manager see your potential and desire to work.

3. Combination resume

What is a combination resume?

The combination resume format (or hybrid resume) is a middle ground between the reverse chronological resume and functional one. As the name suggests, it combines the aspects of the other two resume types. The combination style focuses more on skills but leaves plenty of room to provide details on your past work. Shortly, it focuses on skills without throwing off the work experience section. The more transferable skills you include, the easier it will be to make a successful resume. 

When should you use a combination resume?

Combination resumes were designed for job seekers who already have a relevant work experience or even looking to jump into a new industry. Moreover, if you’re applying for a position that requires a lot of technical skills and expertise, using a combination format is the best way to showcase these abilities to the hiring manager. If you had an impressive set of accomplishments and job duties in previous positions and want to highlight the skills you’ve developed over the years this style is perfect to help you succeed in a career path.

When should you avoid using combination resume?

Combination resumes don’t work well when you don’t have much work experience or your duties weren’t specified. Also, if you didn’t get any promotions, awards or achievements over the course of your career don’t go for the hybrid resume. You should better use a chronological resume structure. However, if you eventually got one, do not forget explain and emphasize each of them.  

Combination resume structure

Formatting a resume demands your skills and qualifications first. Those skills that are most relevant to a particular job opening must be on the top. Underneath each skill, you make a bulleted list of professional achievements that highlight the skill. Your employment history is listed next, in reverse chronological order. It would be perfect to divide the descriptions of your work experience into “Related Work Experience” and “Additional Professional Experience” sections. This allows you to focus recruiter’s attention on your most relevant experience while at the same time providing a complete work history.

Let’s have a look at combination resume sample.

combination_resume_example

A proper combination resume order should be as follows:

  1. Contact information
  2. Skills Summary
  3. Additional Skills
  4. Work Experience
  5. Education

If you are still unsure of your ability to create a good resume format on your own, don’t hesitate to use our professional resume writing help and get your documents done on a higher level! ---

Recent posts
6 Effective salary negotiation tips for fresh grads

Salary negotiation is a serious topic to discuss with your potential boss. It is especially challenging and daunting for a fresh graduate who has just entered the workforce and has never done this before. College grads seem to be very anxious and shy about it. In this article, we will show you statistics that will make you less stressed about it and will give priceless salary negotiations tips that will lead to success and satisfaction on both sides.

9 Things losers do on a regular basis (Never do these)

Everyone can get failure experience without any exception. It’s completely OK when we fail as we all are humans beings and can make mistakes, it’s natural. However, there are some unsuccessful people that fail constantly. They keep making the same mistakes over and over again. If you want to know why do we fail and how to avoid these common failures then keep reading the article in order to escape unsuccessfulness. 

How to survive a job search in the age of AI

Now, from video job interviews to candidate facial recognition, there is more to expect from the evolution of Artificial Intelligence in recruitment. However, regardless of any developments, here is what you can do improve your employment search strategies in the AI age.

5 Ways to find jobs that are not posted online

You can monitor job search websites 24/7, but suddenly your friend gets the position you have never heard about at the company of your dream. Intuition? Corruption? Universal conspiracy? Maybe he knows some secret loopholes? Let’s find out!

Can you apply to different positions at the same company?

Making decisions is never easy. Especially when they may influence future life and career. That is why job seekers often struggle choosing from several vacancies. On the one hand, applying to multiple jobs is a normal process. However, the situation stops feeling comfortable when the candidate is applying to two different jobs at the same company. Let’s have a look at some strategies and see if any of them works.

Ways to put promotions and multiple positions on your resume (with examples)

You’re not the only one struggling with showing off your career progression within the same company. We've prepared great tips and examples that will help you on how to put a promotion on a resume, how to list multiple positions at one company and how to impress recruiters with your career progress.

7 Job hunt trends you need to know in 2019 and beyond

42% of employers state that there is talent shortage and it’s hard to find the perfect candidate they really need. We have analyzed job search trends and we’re going to show you what are job trends today to make the job search easier for you. Check it out 7 main job market trends to be well prepared and know what to expect in the nearest future from employers and companies.

9 Career lessons everyone can learn from Game of Thrones

To obtain a dream job in a real world you can implement Game of Thrones success stories and career moves to end up on top of the career ladder. Check out the top 9 lessons you can learn from Game of Thrones strategy game.

How to explain an employment gap on your resume (with examples)

The job hunt is never easy. But what if your resume employment history is far from perfect? Some of us can take some time off from work for different reasons. Some people take this time to raise a child, finish their education, travel abroad. Some people got laid off or even fired from a previous job and it took a few months to find a new one. What is the perfect way for explaining gaps in employment? We will show you how to create a consistent resume that will demonstrate that you are a reliable professional who is a perfect fit for a job.

Daenerys Targaryen's resume: A strong woman in the man's world

Let’s take up as our example the race to become the King/Queen of Westeros and rule all of the Seven Kingdoms. To fill a royal role in Westeros you have to possess certain skills and competencies, just like any job in our world. If we were to transfer one of the most progressive and strong characters in our world, their resume would look like Daenerys Targaryen's.