A functional resume lists work experience and skills sorted by skill area or job function. The functional resume is used to focus on skills that are specific to the type of position being sought. This format directly emphasizes specific professional capabilities and utilizes experience summaries as its primary means of communicating professional competency. In contrast, the chronological resume format will briefly highlight these competencies prior to presenting a comprehensive timeline of career growth through reverse chronological listings, with the most recent experience listed first.
A reverse chronological resume lists a candidate's job experiences in chronological order, generally covering the previous 10 to 15 years. Positions are listed with starting and ending dates. Current positions on a resume typically list the starting date to the present. The reverse chronological resume format is most commonly used by those who are not professional resume writers.
Most people are not fully equipped for the task of developing a resume that meets all of the criteria listed above and that is why a professional resume writer is needed. However, my experience has found that a professional writer is not contacted until an attempt has been made to wing it, so to speak, and the results sought have not been obtained. In other words, there have been few or no job calls received. There is a hesitation to pay for the cost of a resume writer, especially when a person is unemployed - and I certainly understand the financial limitations of that situation. What I have found is that anyone who needs a job also needs to make this investment as it is an investment in a career that can yield long term results.
Another important decision that has to be made about the development of a resume is the format it should follow and the most common approach is use of a chronological style. This approach lists each job in chronological or date order and the most current job is listed at the top of the page. The inherent problem with this type of resume is that the focus is placed on what the candidate is doing now without drawing attention to the skills that have been acquired throughout their entire career.
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