Different Types of Resumes
Most students will start their first job in high school or college students, whether it is a part time job during the school year, or full time work during the summer break. Since in many cases this will be the first official job you have to apply and interview for, you will need a resume.
There are a lot of different types of resumes, and it can be difficult to know which one is the best option for the job you’re applying for, and will display your skills to your advantage. Usually, the type of resume you choose will depend on how much relevant experience you have for the job, because each resume type will highlight different information.
All resumes need to include your contact details clearly displayed, usually across the top of the page. You should have your full name, address, phone number, and email address included, so that prospective employers will know who you are, and how to get in touch with you.
Like the name suggests, a chronological resume organizes your information in chronological order, backwards from most recent work experience to older experience. This is the most common type of resume, and is most useful for students who already have a decent amount of work experience, such as several previous jobs or volunteer positions over the course of a few years.
Chronological resumes are ideal for showcasing your most recent work experience when that experience is the most relevant to the job you are applying for. Group your information according to each job or volunteer position, and include the job title, whether it was full-time, part-time, casual, or seasonal employment, and the company name. Beneath that, you should list short bullet points of what you did in that job — responsibilities, regular tasks, notable projects, and other skills that are relevant to the new job’s list of requirements.
Following the work experience section, you should include the details of your education, including the school name, city, and years you started and graduated. If you are still in school, you can note your expected future graduation date. Follow this up with a section listing any additional skills, awards, or notable accomplishments.
Skills-Based or Functional Resume
A functional or skills-based resume is one that can be very useful for students, especially those applying for their very first job, as it highlights skills and abilities rather than specific previous employment.
Your first section in this resume format should list skills you possess that are relevant to the job you’re applying for. It’s a good idea to group related skills together, such as Organizational, Interpersonal, Technical, Physical, Customer Service, and any other skill groups you might have, such as skills with animals. Generally, you will want to list the most important skills first, followed by other skills.
Follow your skills section with your education information, the same as in a chronological resume, and any notable achievements or extra-curricular activities.
While this is another common type of resume, it comes with a note to use with caution. Creative resumes are ones that use non-traditional layouts, formatting, colours, or images, in addition to text. It’s important to remember that not every company or job will appreciate a resume that is fancy or non-standard, as these can be harder to read or process. Also, in many cases digital resumes will still be printed out in black and white, or will be submitted through an online applicant management software, both of which will negate any creative look you add to your resume.
There are some jobs where creative resumes are appropriate, such as jobs in the visual arts, graphic and web design, videography, or marketing. However, your best bet–to be sure that prospective employers can see your creative efforts properly–will always be a clean, professional, standard resume with links to your online portfolio or with separate samples of your work attached, depending on the job requirements.
Regardless of which resume type you use, be sure that all information is well organized, written clearly and concisely, and with no spelling or grammar errors.