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  Category: Articles » Business » Employment » Article

Résumé Formats: Which is Right for You?

By Melanie Winograd

Writing a professional, polished résumé can be considered an art. Your canvas is the blank piece of fine linen paper and your concept is your background, skills and abilities. Understanding the right way to write your résumé is very specific to your background. This guide will explain the various layouts that will help you create your masterpiece.

1. Chronological Format

This format is organized by job titles and companies and presented in reverse chronological order, with the most recent work experience appearing first. It usually contains bulleted descriptions of work duties that are relevant to the job objective. It is the most common résumé format.

2. Functional/Combination
This format is organized by job skills or functions, with the emphasis on transferable skills that apply to the job objective. The "combination" in the name refers to the inclusion of job titles, company names and employment dates.

3. Executive Format
This format emphasizes career achievements, such as improvements, innovations, cost-saving efforts, percentage increases, company recognitions, etc. Proven capabilities are often listed in a separate section near the beginning of the résumé.
4. Curriculum Vitae
This format lists publications, presentations, seminars, research, etc. for scientific and academic professionals. Educational background and special credentials are placed near the beginning of the vitae.

5. Information Technology
This format contains a descriptive list of computer skills near the beginning of the résumé. This list would include such skills as Operating Systems, Databases, Protocols, Networks, Languages, Software, Hardware, etc.

6. Emailable Version
This involves modifying a formatted resume so it can be emailed or posted on the Internet. Because many potential employers conduct computer searches using keywords to find appropriate job candidates, add a keyword list, consisting of nouns and noun phrases that describe key duties, skills and proficiencies that apply to the targeted position.
About the Author
Certified Professional Career Coaches will help you write your résumé with the most appropriate format for your background. Just log on to

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