A format resume (or 'resume format', as it’s better known) is used to structure your resume and showcase your professional career, experience, and skills. The next question, and one that surprises many job-seekers, is: what format are you going to use?
Did you even know there were different types of resume formats?
Don’t panic. There are only three to four formats we need to focus on, and they’re all a variation on one basic theme. All you need to do is figure out which one best suits your needs. If you’ve got a few minutes, I can tell you everything you need to know about these resume formats right now.
This is the most common resume format, and the one you’ve probably come across before. The name might be long, but the premise is simple: list all your jobs in chronological order from most recent to oldest. To really capitalise on this type of layout, begin with a strong professional summary or brand statement, followed by your work history in reverse chronological order. Make sure you include these details for each job:
This resume format is suitable for job-seekers at all levels, and anyone who can answer ‘yes!’ to these questions:
As popular as the reverse-chronological format is, it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. You might want to give it a miss if:
Find out more about a Reverse-Chronological Resume format here.
The functional resume format is not as common, but it’s ideal for career histories with long stretches of unemployment or frequent job-hopping. Simply put, this format accentuates specific, relevant capabilities and plays down your chronological work history. To get the most out of this format, put the focus on:
It’s a good idea to consider this format if:
So, this format is a better solution for job-seekers with an inconsistent work history or a tendency to jump from role to role—but that doesn’t make it perfect. Keep these things in mind:
Click here for a full
explanation of a functional resume format.
The hybrid resume format is exactly what it sounds like: a hybrid, or combination, of your key skills, experience, capabilities and work/employment history. This format allows recruiters to see the full picture—that means your key skills, as well as where and when you acquired them. A hybrid format resume uses the standard building blocks of resume writing but organises them in the most appealing way possible.
This is the format resume I recommend to clients:
There are only a handful of situations where I wouldn’t recommend using the hybrid resume format. I suggest you steer clear of this one if you are:
right? Click here for more about the hybrid resume format.
The mantra stays the same no matter what format you use: you need to market yourself in a clear, creative, convincing way. If you have a long career history, or are highly experienced and possess very marketable skills, choose a resume format that flaunts these attributes and creatively pitches you to recruiters. But if you need something to give your resume a little bit more finesse, a functional or hybrid resume format might work better for you.
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