Functional Resume 

The functional format works particularly well for people who do not have related work experience, who have large gaps in their work history, or who have a wide variety of experience in different areas.  In the Functional resume, the focus is primarily on related skills.  In place of the "Work Experience" section, the functional format employs two sections, Related Skills and Work Chronology.  Under the "Related Skills" section, experiences from work, education, volunteer and extra-curricular activities are drawn together and presented under sub headings describing the skill you want to emphasize.  The "Work and Volunteer Chronology" sections will serve to indicate where you gained experience.  This section should include only job/volunteer title, name of employer and dates of employment. 


  • Consider this format if you have limited direct experience, since it de-emphasizes a lack of related work experience
  • Enable you to highlight skills as they relate to a specific job and it gives you a strong awareness of who you are and what you can bring to a position


  • It is not immediately evident the type or amount of work experience you have
  • Takes more effort to develop this type of resume
  • Does not demonstrate employment growth and development
  • Some employers have trouble following this style of resume

 Chronological Resume 

This is the format people typically think of when they think of resumes.  In a chronological resume, one's experience is presented in reverse date order.  This format highlights your employment history and is recommended for use when you have a specific job in mind and when your experience record indicates a consistent related history. 


  • Traditional format that is most commonly used
  • Emphasizes job duties and highlights a steady work history
  • Easiest type of resume to prepare
  • Excellent type to use if you have experience related to the job you are applying for, as it focuses on your employment experience


  • If you do not have related or relevant work experience, it is immediately evident
  • Gaps in your work history are strongly shown
  • It poorly highlights or identifies your skills
  • Not well suited for job seekers who are changing careers