Compare and contrast Chronological, Functional, Combination, and Plain Text Resumes.

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Kristen Lentz | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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I feel like I almost need some sort of graphic organizer like a Venn diagram to compare these properly, but let's focus on similarities and differences. 

Similarities: 

  • Functional, chronological, and combination resumes can look extremely professional.
  • They all contain basic contact information and to some extent, skills and work history. 
  • A combination resume is similar to both a functional and chronological resume, because it combines both skills and work experience. 
  • All four are common types of resumes that can be used in the mainstream job market.
  • All four resumes have strengths and weaknesses, but can be used to make the potential employee appear in the best possible light.

Differences:

  • Unlike the other types of resumes, plain text resumes lack formatting and are best used for online document uploads where formatting may be lost.
  • Functional and Chronological focus on different aspects. Functional highlights skills, whereas Chronological focuses on work experience.
  • A Plain Text resume could be chronological, functional, or combination, just without the fancy formatting.
  • Combination resume can be seen as having an advantage over the functional or chronological because it offers both skills and work experience; however, some employers prefer the more mainstream, recognized formats of chronological or functional.

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