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What is the Difference between Chronological and Functional Resumes?

A Resume is a single piece of document that can help you to shine your career progressively. There are different styles, format, and writing that resume has for professionals to choose from. In this post, we will discuss the main difference between Chronological and Functional resumes. Each of these resume types has benefits, negatives, and ways to promote your career in the right direction. 

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Let us start with a simple definition of both Chronological and Functional resumes. 

What is Chronological Resume?

A Chronological resume is a method of writing that lists your work and experience in reverse order. Thus showing your recent job first and followed by the previous job experience.

A Chronological resume starts with a Personal name, email ID, phone, and job title you applied for. Then a small summary or objective to highlight your career goals. Followed by sections for educational qualification, work experience, and individual sections. Many Professionals complement their resumes by writing a cover letter too.

In this type of Chronological resume, professional skills and qualifications are positioned at the bottom of the resume. Chronological is the most preferred and suitable way for professional resume writing. Most job applicants follow a chronological resume.

 Now we will explain the Functional Resume!

What is a Functional Resume?

A Functional Resume gives more preference towards your skills and capabilities rather than your work experience. This type of Functional resume gives the reader the viewpoint for carrying out the specific roles and responsibilities that comes with the job.  

In a Functional resume, professional skills, certifications, and qualifications become the center of attention. Explaining the skills with the tasks performed and ability to deliver with times, deadlines as well as success rate.

All awards, achievements, licenses, degrees, and educational certifications are mentioned with a clear objective to give recruiters more preference towards your ability. Some Functional resumes have a work experience section though it is small and listed at the bottom to compliment your job position.

Difference between Chronological and Functional Resumes 

Here are the main differences between Chronological and Functional resumes to help you choose the best one for improving your career path.

Structure/Format

One of the main differences between Chronological and Functional resumes is found in their visual structure or format. A chronological resume will showcase the career reverse path from current to past. Then sections for education, work experiences, skills, and personal details.

While Functional resumes start with contact information and then move on to skills & capabilities to give them more preference.

Primary Focus

A chronological resume will put your skills and work experience as a catalyst for future growth. And for a Functional resume, an individual resume takes the preference of showing your skills and abilities to accomplish job responsibilities.

A Chronological resume shows your career, learning curve, struggles, and ability to accomplish certain tasks laying the path for future success. A Functional resume showcases you as a more proficient skillful and competent individual to accomplish certain tasks. These Skills may or may not depend on your experience.

Chronological and Functional Resume: Conclusion 

Both Chronological and Functional resume have their pros and cons. Though most employers, HR departments, and recruiters are familiar with Chronological resumes and may interpret functional resumes as incomplete or chaotic. Whereas many employers often disregard chronological resumes for specific skills that are missing or looking for a more refined candidate for that particular job position.

You have to be selective and make a careful decision based on your understanding to make this essential decision for your career. Job requirements, roles and responsibilities, circumstances, and recruiters’ viewpoints are some of the factors that can affect your judgment when selecting the suitable one.

Chronological Resumes will suit professionals who have brilliant work experience and a concise career path.

Professionals who started with an entry-level position or lowest grade and made their way to the top should prefer a Chronological resume.

For an Experienced Professional with accomplishment and a successful career path, a chronological resume will highlight your industry skills, experience, and capabilities precisely for future employers.  

Functional Resumes are more suitable for professionals with gaps in their career path, work history in different fields, or any circumstances to keep the focus on your skills and abilities.

Professionals looking for a change in their mid-life career change can use a functional resume to highlight their particular skills and abilities to get more attention to match with job specifications.

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