There are two main components of resume writing: content and format. We have numerous pages detailing what content to include in different sections of your resume, but we also want to provide an overview of the 3 commonly accepted resume formats: Chronological, Functional, and Hybrid. We will also review how to select the best format for you and link to examples of each.
First things first. Do you know if you need to create a resume or a CV? There are key differences, and knowing them will prevent easily avoidable mistakes. In general, if you are applying for a job within the U.S. or for a U.S.-based organization, use a resume. When applying for a job within Europe or for a European organization, write a CV.
Here is a quick reference for all the major regions:
We have listed all the differences in our article: Resume vs. CV
When choosing a resume format, you should consider what aspects you want to highlight: your work experience or your key skills? Also consider which one is most relevant to the job you’re applying for. This is the first decision you’ll need to make when creating a resume, and it determines how you will tell the story of your career.
The most commonly used resume format is the chronological format, which focuses on work experience. Keep in mind this format works best for companies using applicant tracking systems (ATS) to scan resumes, so you should have good reason to choose another format. We will explain the differences and when another format might be a good option for you.
The standard and preferred format for a resume.
Good option for
Learn more about the chronological resume and download a free template.
Focuses on skills instead of work experience.
Good option for
Learn more about the functional resume and download a free template.
Combines the best of both worlds and showcases work experience and skills.
Who should use this format?
Learn more about the combination resume and download a free template.
As a recruiter, I have been helping candidates find a new job for over 5 years. On this website I share my knowledge to help you make a good resume.