There is no one perfect resume writing format to use. You will likely have several resumes throughout your career, unless you stay in the same position with the same employer as long as you work.
As you set about to write or update your resume, one of the first decisions you will make is which resume writing format to choose.
A chronological resume organizes your experience by your work history, listed in reverse chronological order, and includes a job description and accomplishments in each position. Education and additional skills are listed afterwards. Employers like this format because it gives them a clear snapshot of your employment background.
While a purely functional resume organizes your experience according to your skill set (“functions”), it is rarely used. A combination resume has largely taken its place. This format mixes chronological and functional elements, with a list of your skills followed by your employment history and education. The combination resume is becoming increasingly favored by career changers, those with gaps in their employment history, and those who have held a number of different jobs during their careers.
(Learn more about the 3 main resume writing formats.)
This quick quiz will help make an informed decision about the best resume writing format for you to use at this stage in your career – chronological or combination.
When you assume different responsibilities, circumstances change, or you prepare to move into another job, take this quiz again. You may want to modify your current resume or build a new one to accommodate your newly-acquired experiences or to target a different position. (Use this resume worksheet to keep track of your experience.)
On a piece of paper, number a list from 1-16.
Read each of the above numbered statements. Record a yes or no answer for each one. In situations where you feel both answers apply, select the one which is most appropriate.
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