How To Choose The Best Resume Format?

Recruiters and hiring managers go through hundreds and thousands of resumes for a job position. They hardly take a second glance at each resume. Therefore, all you have got is a few seconds or even lesser to impress the recruiter.

So, you will have to highlight your top qualities in your resume. It should be structured to be the center of attraction and immediately visible to the hiring manager. But each of us has different abilities and applies to positions under different circumstances.

If A is experienced, B might be a fresher. It is precisely why we have different resume formats. But how to choose the most suitable one? This article will walk you through the three major types of resume format and their pros and cons. It is a fantastic read that will help you identify the format that will highlight your strength, and you can choose accordingly.

Before we get to the pros and cons, here are the three main resume formats

  1. Reverse-Chronological Resume
  2. Functional Resume
  3. Hybrid Resume

Each format has its equal share of advantages and disadvantages. You can pick one based on your need and requirements.

Reverse-Chronological Resume

It is the most commonly used resume format. The format name is derived from the way we list the experience in the resume. This kind of resume lists down your experience and skills in a reverse-chronological way. You start from your recent work and go backward, listing your previous job experiences.

The contents mainly include contact details, resume summary/objective, work experience, skills, and education. You can also mention other additional sections that can help secure the job.


  • The advantage is that it provides a clear and neat picture of your work records and skills
  • The chronological format explains your growth easily
  • It is one of the most preferred formats for recruiters and HR managers
  • You can also mention the most relevant job role at the top that will show the recruiters where you stand


  • It makes career gaps or company changes easily visible in plain sight
  • A career change will be very obvious
  • It will be tough for a fresher or one with less experience to fill this resume

Functional Resume

A functional resume is also known as a skill-based resume. As the name suggests, it focuses on the skills and talents you can bring on to the table. It gives less priority to the experience you have gained over the years.

The content in this kind of resume is similar to that of reverse-chronological. However, it includes additional skills section. It focuses on areas of strength and personal achievements. Functional resumes can exclude work history or mention it in a line or two, based on your work experience level.


  • It is very good to emphasize and highlight the bag full of skills you have.
  • In the case of switching careers, it gives the recruiters an idea of why they should hire you, even if you do not have essential experience in the field.
  • When a graduate or fresher with no experience applies, it can be used to highlight the practical skills and potential of the candidate.


  • It might make you look less qualified for the post as it lacks depth.
  • Recruiters either dislike or are not much familiar with this kind of resume.
  • It is not good with internet system readings like the Applicant tracking system (ATS), which will have difficulties figuring out the keywords and skills.


Hybrid Resume

A hybrid resume is also known as a combination resume. It helps you draft a mix of reverse-chronological and functional resumes, highlighting both your skills and work experience. The blend of both these resumes gives the flexibility you need in mentioning significant achievements.


Combining the best of both, it contains both additional skills and work experience, with equal emphasis on skills and work history.


  • Gives you a choice to blend both work history and skills and mention either of these in great detail while not compromising on the other.
  • If you have both work experience and skills to showcase, it will be helpful to highlight all that you can contribute.
  • It emphasizes transferable skills and shows your employment record and the skills you have used in your previous jobs.


  • ATS finds it challenging to read the combination resumes, just like the functional ones.
  • If you do not have much experience, this format will not be the best.
  • Work history might go unnoticed, and you might need an extra page since both sections are included.


Closing Thoughts

Chronological-based resumes help you list work experience. Skill-based resumes help you highlight the skills and talents you have, rather than on work experience. Hybrid resumes are a combination of both that allows you to play around with the format to come up with the best possible way to portray your skills, work, and talent.


As discussed in this blog, each resume has pros and cons. So it is always best to choose resumes based on your work experience, skills, and the job you are applying to.

Zaman Lashari
Zaman Lashari
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