April 27, 2014

Which Resume Format Is Right For You?

What does your resume say about you? Hopefully, your resume tells your story. It should tell an employer who you are, what you’ve done, where you did it, what you’ve accomplished, and why you’re the right person for the job.

Every job seeker needs a resume. It should accompany every job application you send. Ideally your resume needs to be more than just a boring list of jobs, employers, titles, schooling, etc. It needs to capture a recruiter’s attention and make them wanting to learn more about you – with the ultimate goal of getting a job interview. If you need some resume tips, we’ve got lots on JobMonkey.

If you asked your 10 best friends for a copy of their resume, you would receive vastly different resumes. Everyone creates, designs, and formats their resume with a personal touch. It is important to personalize it. That is why all those resume templates that are easy to find online are a bad idea.

Think about your resume. What resume format did you use? A resume’s format is how your resume is laid out. Each resume format will have pros and cons. It’s up to you to choose the best type of resume format for your job search. To get started, here are a few examples:

  • Chronological – This is the standard format that most people use. List your most recent job first and works toward your last. It highlights your professional progression, employment gaps, employers, and more. It gives a clear picture of what you’ve accomplished.
  • Targeted – If your work history is a bit scattered, use this format. It will focus on job requirements and qualifications from the job listing. Then choose to highlight your skills, jobs, and accomplishments that match the job listing and requirements. A targeted resume can make you appear to be a stronger applicant because it is so focused.
  • Functional – If you have limited experience or major employment gaps, put your skills and qualifications first. Show that you know your stuff even if your experience is from outside of the work environment.
  • Infographic – An infographic resume is a new form of resume that offers a creative outlook on your experience and employment. It’s a visual feast of information. They are ideal for creative jobs, but may not be the best idea for people that lack graphic design skills or are applying for jobs that are not creative. It’s usually a good idea to include a traditional resume with an infographic resume.
  • Video – There are not too many employers who want a video resume or “visume”. This resume format allows recruiters to see your body language, hear your voice, and get a feel for how you present yourself. There are many challenges to making a stand-out video resume. Give your video resume some thought before you have to entertain a recruiter for 3 to 5 minutes on camera.
  • Combination – There is no right or wrong way to create a resume. It’s easy to take bits and pieces from all of these resume formats to create a resume that is totally unique for you.

You can learn more about resume formats on US News. It’s your resume that ultimately lands you the job interview and hopefully the job. Take the time to make yourself look like a rock star!

Be creative, honest, and smart about how you design your resume. Keep it focused on the ultimate goal of landing you a job. When your resume is ready, then it’s time to apply for jobs.

About this Author 

Derek Lennon is a skier and writer who lives, works, and plays in the mountains. He travels the globe in search of snow and adventure. Life has allowed him to live and work all over the world doing cool jobs and loving every minute of it.

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