Resumes are different and can highlight your best features if you know how and when to use them appropriately. There are basically four different types of resumes: Functional, Chronological, Combination (of Functional and Chronological), and Electronic.
A Functional Resume highlights your skills and positive features without specifically reviewing your job history. Think about the skills, knowledge and expertise that you have developed over the years and how you can promote them in this type of resume. The advantage to a functional resume will de-emphasize any gaps of employment that you may have experienced due to layoff or breaks from work such as staying home with the kids or caring for a loved one. But it is designed to showcase all of the positive and transferrable skills that you can offer a company.
A Chronological Resume reviews a steady progression of employment opportunities that have enhanced your skills. While working steadily and uninterrupted during your professional career, you have transitioned into a professional in specifics areas and have demonstrated growth by advancing from one job to another. If you have a solid job history with no gaps in employment, then this option would probably work best for you.
A Combination Resume combines the best of the Functional and Chronological resumes by emphasizing skills while de-emphasizing specific job tasks or responsibilities. Consider how you have transitioned and professionally grown during your career, and in the process have gained specific knowledge, skills, and perhaps even new training or additional education. This is what you need to take advantage of and highlight. The Combination resume is great for those who are in a career transition or are reentering the workforce after an absence and have taken advantage of their gap in employment to enhance themselves professionally. With this type, be sure to organize it well in order to limit confusion around career changes. It may require some creativity.
With Electronic Resumes, your skills, qualifications and experience are what employers scan for. Usually with these types of resumes you are asked to provide specific information that will determine your qualifications for the job. Employers are only interested in reviewing resumes of candidates who specifically meet what they are looking for. They would prefer to spend less time reviewing resumes and more time focusing on other job tasks. So make sure that you are detailed in the areas that require your response.
Finally, when preparing your resume for a specific job or in a specific field, make sure that your resume reflects the skills and qualifications that the employer is looking for. Preparing more than one resume is necessary. You will have to revise your resume often to ensure that it is appropriate to each employer’s request, but the extra steps that you take on the front end could open doors to a new job opportunity.
One challenge that comes along with any employment application process is to create a resume that will open doors and lead to a job interview. Where some job searchers fall short is that they are not aware of the different types of resumes; which one would be most beneficial for them, and how to highlight their skills, and experience in such a way that it produces favorable results and doesn’t detract or deter from the employment application process.