50+ Job Seeker’s Tool Kit! Which Resume Format Works Best for You and Why!
As a professional resume writer and Executive coach, I write blogs for job seekers going through career transition. You’ll find my blogs written on the topics of resumes, interviewing, social networking, negotiating and many other subjects related to help you through career transition.
I have been hearing so many stories lately about the functional resume. Stories that are giving the functional resume a bad rap. I’ve been hearing these stories for years. And, I’ve been writing functional resumes that work great for my clients for 25+ years. So, I would like to educate you on which resume format is best for you and why. And how to write a functional resume that lands the interview for those that need this resume format.
The best resume format is determined by your future career.
Not necessarily where you’ve been. But where you are going now. Below is an explanation of the 3 resume formats.
1. The chronological resume highlights the progress in your jobs. This resume format works best for professionals staying in the same profession and moving up in their careers.
2. The functional resume works best for professionals changing careers or making a lateral change into a different industry or position. It also works well for professionals making a career transition from business owner to a corporate position.
3. The combination resume works well when only your most recent position is related to the jobs that interest you.
If you’re 50+ include relevant accomplishments to your resume going back 10 to 15 years.
This is recommended for all 3 resume formats listed above. If you held previous positions with a job title or company name that adds value, you can finalize your resume with a Previous Employment section and list one-liners with your job title, company name, city and state without the dates or actual accomplishments.
Let me share with you the story of Bill. Bill contacted me last week and asked me to review his resume. He just paid a professional resume writing service $400 for his 2-page chronological resume. This is a good fee for his level of position. The accomplishments were results-oriented, at least most of them were, not all. (I recommend all accomplishment be results-oriented.)
The BIG issue in Bill's resume was the format. He needed a functional resume. Why? Read on ...
Bill’s resume was written in a chronological format and he was interested in a job where his experience was over 30 years ago. This resume is NOT going get him any interviews for the jobs that interest him. And, it will age him. He clearly needed a functional resume. He told me the professional resume service he hired only wrote chronological resumes.
Bill didn’t know any better at the time. However, I really think all professional resume writers should know how to write all 3 resume formats. As you can see now, the reason why is because there is only one format that will work best for you to land the interview for the jobs that interest you. The only difference between the resume formats should be the focus and how the information is presented and highlighted. Human Resources is still looking for the same information, i.e., your job titles, who you worked for, what you accomplished and when, going back 10 to 15 years.
How to write a functional resume that will land the interview.
Next, I interviewed Bill as I wrote his functional resume. We included a Career Summary listing his job titles and company names, city, state and dates going back 10 to 15 years. Then, we highlighted 3 primary skills under Selected Accomplishments on the first page of his 2-page resume. For example, we added Program Management, Process Improvement and Team Development where we listed each accomplishment under the appropriate skill. At the bottom of his 2-page resume we added a final section titled Previous Employment where we listed his job titles, company names, city, state without the dates of previous employment. Employers are interested in what he accomplished going back 10 to 15 years which we listed in the Career Summary on the first page of Bill’s resume.
If you are a job seeker, I would like to encourage you to check out HiringforHope.org, and become a member of this very special non profit organization, whose purpose is to help people through career transition. This is where you can volunteer. And, you too, can make a difference.
Do you need immediate help with job interviewing, social networking or salary negotiating? Or, maybe you're thinking about hiring a professional resume writer to help you write your resume. I can help. To email me a comment, ask a question or schedule a free initial phone consultation, please give me a call or contact me at www.JustResumesUSA.com.