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Is a functional style resume taken seriously?

Office Hours #1: Resume Writing with Judy Park [43:00]

This question was posed by a question during one of our most recent "CareerVillage Office Hours" sessions. During Office Hours sessions, we invite students to pose questions related to a specific topic. In this case, the topic was resume writing. If you answer this question, we will reach out to the students who attended this office hours session to inform them of your response, and all students on CareerVillage will benefit. If you would be interested in hosting an office hours session on a particular topic, please reach out to our staff!

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Judy Park's answer: I like chronological, but I haven't seen a lot of functional resumes to be honest. I think chronological is preferred unless they're asking for a functional resume. To me, a chronological resume tells me 2 things: how long you are going to stay at a job, and what does your history look like. This gives me a better idea of who you are. Functional won't emphasize your loyalty to the company or your promotions, and it might not have the room to highlight those good stories. CV Office Hours .
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Scott’s Answer

You can ask 100 recruiters our opinions about résumés and you'll get 150 opinions or more. What you'll never hear a recruiter say is, "Ugh! The candidate made it too easy to see why they're a great fit for the job."

Some recruiters dislike functional résumés because they lack context or candidates seem to "hide" things like a sporadic work history or unrelated employment.

Consider a blended functional résumé which buckets your most relevant achievements by skill, then provides a brief work history at the bottom of the page.
Pick three “buckets” of skills you’re good at. For example: team leadership, building relationships and influence, and training and development. Then just reorganize the bullets or information you’ve already got written on your résumé to fit under each bucket. Customize those categories to the job posting. Your “buckets” better match the main skills being sought in the posting.

3-4 bullets in each category from any job could go a long way to showcase your skills in a relevant way as opposed to listing each job and hoping a recruiter will infer what qualifies you for a job based on seemingly unrelated experience.

Include a work history at the end that summarizes where you worked and when.

By using this format, you can put the best bullets first, even if they were two jobs ago.


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Patricia’s Answer

As a corporate recruiter who reviews dozens of resumes a day while managing several dozen job openings at a time, preference is for clearly written chronological resumes. Employer names, job titles, dates of employment should be easy to find with clear responsibilities, skills used, and measurable contribution to the business (if applicable) or quantifiable work is preferred. resume
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Paul’s Answer

Yes. A functional resume is good for applying for jobs when you may not have much experience. The type of job you are likely applying for is an entry level or doesn't require many years of experience so a functional resume will help you highlight what you would bring to the job.

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Kim’s Answer

Yes! What I recommend is this: If you are filling out an on-line application, or a paper application for the employer, it will look an awful lot like your chronological resume. To market yourself from a different angle, attach a functional resume! After all, if you get two opportunities to make a sales pitch, why use the same sales pitch twice?

What I really like about the functional resume is that since it focuses on particular skills, rather than dates, you can change it up: If one job is big on administrative skills, list that skill first. If another job wants marketing skills, list that skill first.

Always, regardless of what kind of resume you use, Always read the job announcement and tailor your resume to fit the job you are applying for! It gets results!
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Dustin’s Answer

I agree that a functional resume is a great approach. For HR, there is still a Work Experience section that shows your history. But for hiring managers that are looking for a unicorn, specific skillset, or unique expertise, this is a great approach.
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