Your resume is usually the first impression a potential employer has of you. You'll use it to market yourself in your search for an internship or permanent position. Think of it as your marketing tool, your brochure, your advertisement. It tells about the product (you) to employers. Let it give the reader a flavor of what you can do, what you want to do, and where you are going.
For most students, chronological-bullet formate resumes work best. For someone entering the job market for the first time or someone changing jobs within his/her career field, this style of resume is usually best.
The chronological resume emphasizes the work and educational accomplishments the person has had in specific situations. It is typically the easiest resume for the reader to follow.
This style of resume is very limiting to the person who is changing careers. It does little to reorient the reader to the person's transferable skills that may fit the job in question. A person can be "labeled" by the prior jobs with this style of resume.
NOTE: In general, we strongly recommend using a chronological style resume at this point in your career
This style of resume may be the best for someone changing careers or re-entering the workforce after a period of absence.
This functional resume organizes your experience according to specific skills or functions. Categories may include: Management Skills, Analytical Skills, Problem Solving Skills, Leadership Skills, etc.
It does not highlight the settings in which those experiences were obtained. It is not a good style for someone remaining in their chosen field or someone with a strong work background. It fails to show the career maturity and depth of experience that a person has developed in their field. It can also be hard to follow and fails to associate a given skill with a particular job setting.
NOTE: We do not recommend a functional resume format. Only in very unusual situations are functional resumes a viable alternative.
The combination format merges elements of the Chronological and Functional approaches. It is a very effective format to convey work history and skills. Both the job changer and the career changer can use this format to present capabilities and transferable skills combined with work experience.
Many companies, especially high-tech companies, use document scanning technology to quickly and efficiently match job openings with qualified job-seekers. Searches ae done using keyword and phrases that describe the skills and education required for the position, thus when writing a scannable resume, it is extremely important to use terms and familiar acronyms (jargon) that describe your skills and experience.
Keep in mind though, that a scannable resume has the same major headings as a traditional resume. Use this traditional formate - do not use multiple columns.
NOTE: Companies will usually specify to send a text-based resume, or a scannable resume. If it is not specified, use one of the other, more common formats.