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Choose a Type of Resumé

Hands on a laptop keyboard with superimposed text: curriculum vitae, qualifications, experience, contact details, graduation

A good resumé highlights your relevant skills and achievements for potential employers. Done well, a resumé will get you an interview. The type of resumé you use depends on your work history and the kind of work you’re applying for.

You can choose from 3 basic types of resumés:

  1. chronological resumé lists your work, education, and training history in order from most recent to oldest. Employers are most familiar with this type of resumé. It may be easier to write than the other types, especially if you have a steady work history. Use this outline and these examples to plan your own version:
  2. functional resumé highlights your skills and abilities, rather than your work history. It organizes your achievements in skill categories directly related to the job you’re applying for. A functional resumé plays down any gaps in your work history, but can be challenging to write. Use this outline and these examples to plan your own version:

    For more information about functional resumés, see The Functional Resumé—Focus on What You Can Do.

  3. combination resumé organizes your achievements in skill categories to show what you can bring to the job. Then it briefly outlines your work history. If your experience is not directly related to the job you want, this type of resumé is useful. It will draw attention to your skills and what you can Use this outline and these examples to plan your own version:

Choose the right resumé

Use the resumé that highlights your most impressive and relevant skills and training. Are you applying for a job like the one you have now? A chronological resumé may be the best way to show your related experience. Are you planning to change careers or industries? A functional or a combination resumé will highlight your relevant skills.

Whichever type you choose, make sure it’s concise, free of mistakes, and easy to read. That’s the kind of resumé most likely to get you an interview.

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