What is the Difference Between Reverse Chronological vs. Functional Resumes?

by ResumeEdge.com- The Net's Premier Resume Writing and Editing Service

In modern resumes, information about skills andexperience can be listed using three distinct formats:

  1. Reverse chronological
  2. Functional
  3. A combination of the two

Reverse chronological

Generallyspeaking, hiring managers prefer that employment data is provided with the mostrecent job listed first, followed by the next most recent, and so on. In that way, it's easy to see career progression from an entry-levelposition to a more senior status. It's also easy to detect gaps in dates ofemployment.  These gaps lead somecandidates to use a functional format instead.


Functionalformats stress what skills you have, rather than where and when you used them. These formats are best for students who have just graduated from collegeand have little "real-world" experience, those who have been out of theworkforce for long periods because they were raising children, and job seekerswho are transitioning from one career or industry to another. However, sometimes combining a functional format with a reversechronological format makes the most sense. These are called combination resumes.


With thisformat, skills that are relevant to the current job search are placed in aspecial section by function, while the Professional History or Work Experienceis presented in a standard, reverse-chronological format. This format offers thebest of both worlds, and is highly popular with modern job seekers and hiringmanagers.


ReverseChronological -- Sample One
ReverseChronological -- Sample Two
ReverseChronological -- Sample Three

Functional-- Sample One
Functional-- Sample Two
Functional-- Sample Three

Combination-- Sample One
Combination-- Sample Two
Combination-- Sample Three

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