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There are two common formats of resumes: reverse chronological & functional, also known as skills based. The chart below provides an overview, advantages/disadvantages, as well as samples of each version.

Reverse Chronological Resume Functional Resume (Skills Based)
Overview Lists your work history in reverse order, starting with your current or most recent job and working backwards. Focuses on skills and strengths important to employers. Omits specific dates, names, and places. De-emphasizes a spotty work history.
Advantage Easy to write. Emphasizes steady employment record. Employers like to see job titles, level of responsibility, and dates of your work history. De-emphasizes a spotty work history. Allows you to highlight specific strengths and transferable skills that might not be obvious when outlined in purely chronological order.
Disadvantage Calls attention to employment gaps. Skills can be difficult to spot unless they are listed in the most recent job. Disliked by many employers. It makes them think you may be trying to hide your age, employment gaps, lack of relevant experience, lack of career progression, or underemployment.
Best Used To emphasize past career growth and development in the same career. Or when the name of a former employer may be significant to prospective employer. To emphasize transferable skills you have used in volunteer work, paid work, or coursework. Use this or a combination resume if you are a new graduate, have limited work experience, are changing careers or doing freelance work, or you do not want to call attention to your age.
Don’t use There are gaps in your work history, when calling attention to your age could be a problem, you have changed jobs often, or you are entering the job market for first time or after a long absence. You want to emphasize growth or development or if your duties and responsibilities in recent jobs were limited.
Resume Samples Reverse Chronological Sample Functional Resume Sample

Cover Letter

No job application is complete without a cover letter. The key to writing an effective cover letter is to clearly show how your professional experience fits the needs of the open role and the culture of the hiring company.

A cover letter is a succinct and to the point three paragraph letter to employers explaining your interest in a particular position and why you are the ideal candidate for the role. It’s typically submitted along with your resume in a job application. This letter should highlight your skills, experience and achievements relating to the position you are applying to. Refrain from repeating everything you listed on your resume, cover letters are an opportunity for you to go into more detail about your professional career and explain why you are the ideal candidate for the role and company.

Cover Letter Sample & Template