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Resume Formats: Which One Suits You Best?


Just like choosing the right attire to attend an event, it is crucial to pay attention to several considerations such as what kind of occasion it is, where and when it takes place, and who will be present there. As different venue requires different dresscode, you have to make sure that you wear the right costume matching the occasion in order to save yourself from embarrassment of wearing the wrong outfits. The same principle also applies when you are writing a resume for your job search.

As a fresh graduate, you might be confused of choosing which resume format you should write in your job application. As important as the content itself, a resume format can tell a lot about your quality and determine whether the hiring manager will set an eye on your profile or not. For example, if the recruiter is looking for a skilled individual with tons of experience, he will likely choose candidates who write their resumes in chronological format. Meanwhile, recruiters who are looking to recruit fresh graduates will look for functional format as it is easier to scan.

So whether you are a fresh graduate or experienced individual, it is better to know which format you should pick before jotting down everything. Let’s take a look at the four resume formats commonly used:


This resume is preferred by most recruiters as it emphasises job experiences from most recent to earlier. With a snapshot of working history, recruiters can scan your skills easily. You can use this format when you have long list of working experiences. When writing in this format, you should align the experiences with the job you are applying to and ensure that there are no time lapses between one employment and the others. What is meant by lapses is certain period where you stop being an employee, or period of time when you attend schools or courses.


Different from chronological resume, functional resume focuses more on your skills and experience. Employment is a secondary matter in this case. Therefore, this resume format will suit best for fresh graduates with limited work experience, candidate with lapses of employments, people who are in the middle of a career transition, or those who have no background of career path.


You can use this format when you want to show the employer what type of employee you are. This format is also suitable for you who have just graduated from a university as you can highlight both of your skills and experiences, while still listing your related work history for the job you are applying.


Writing down this resume format will take lots of your time as you need to write in detail starting from the objective, qualification to educational experience that matches your targeted job and company. However, if you choose this format, the result is better because the hiring managers will feel that the resume is tailored exactly to what they are looking for. Yet, you need to be careful as you should only jot down and highlight your real career experience that mirror the job and not the embellished ones.

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