For many professionals, the task of crafting a resume can be daunting. With a wide array of different styles, formats, and writing conventions to choose from, it’s often difficult to determine what is best for your situation. In this post, we will explore the key differences between Chronological and Functional resumes.

Before understanding the resume types, let’s dive into a brief understanding of just resumes. A resume is a document that outlines a job seeker’s professional experience and qualifications for a particular job or position. It includes the individual’s educational background, work experience, certifications, and accomplishments.

It is important because it is typically the first thing employers look at when considering job candidates, and can often determine whether or not a candidate is invited for an interview.

It is important to make sure the resume is well written, includes relevant information, and emphasizes the individual’s strengths in order to give the best impression possible. Resume Writing Services is always there to help and guide you regarding this matter.

What is a Chronological Resume?

A chronological resume is an effective way to showcase your career history and accomplishments in a way that makes it easy for employers to see. This type of resume lists your work experience in reverse chronological order, meaning your most recent position is listed first, followed by the previous ones, going all the way back up to 10 years. 

At the top of this type of resume is typically an “objective statement” or summary which provides information about you and your qualifications. Additionally, your educational background and certifications can be included under the job history section or in a separate section. Your skills and other qualifications are usually listed at the bottom of the page. This type of resume is ideal for job seekers seeking to emphasize their strong, solid work history. For those starting out in their careers, or changing career fields, another resume type may be more appropriate.

What is a Functional Resume?

A functional resume is a type of resume that focuses on specific areas of expertise, rather than a traditional chronological list of job experiences. It highlights the skills and abilities of the job seeker, rather than providing a chronological record of job titles and positions held.

Functional resumes can be used to highlight an applicant’s strengths in a particular field or to emphasize transferable skills that apply to a wide range of jobs.

Functional resumes are also useful for individuals who have gaps in their work history or for those who have had limited professional experience.

By emphasizing skills rather than job titles, functional resumes can significantly reduce the size of gaps that may appear in a traditional chronological resume. It is a popular choice for job seekers who may be transitioning into a new field, returning to the workforce after a period of absence, or want to make a career change.

The difference in Structure:

Structure of a Chronological Resume

  • List your work experience in reverse-chronological order, starting with your most recent position at the top.
  • It includes the job title, employer, dates of employment, and a brief summary of responsibilities for each position held.
  • Education, certifications, volunteer activities, and any awards or honors can be included as well. 
  •  Contact information and relevant skills should also be featured prominently on the resume.

Structure of a Functional  Resume

  • Header: Contact information, including name, address, phone number, and email address
  • Professional Summary: A brief overview of your experience and qualifications
  • Skills Section: A list of relevant skills and competencies
  • Relevant Experience: Relevant positions held (usually in reverse chronological order)
  • Education: List of educational qualifications
  • Additional Information: Any other pertinent information, such as certifications, awards, or volunteer work
  • References: Contact information for references

The difference in Use Case:

When to Use a Chronological Resume?

If you have a solid history of relevant employment and/or are looking to promote specific skills, then a Chronological Resume is likely the right option. Whichever you choose, ensure that your resume provides a clear overview of your experience and qualifications.

A chronological resume is most beneficial if: your work history demonstrates increasing responsibility in the same field or if you have worked at renowned companies. It is also beneficial if you are a recent graduate with relevant experience, or if you are applying for an executive role.

When to Use a Functional Resume?

 If you have gaps in your work history or jobs in different fields, a functional resume is a good option for you. It does not list your information chronologically, making the gaps less noticeable and highlighting the skills you have acquired from each job.

However, some employers may not prefer this type of resume due to its lack of detail when it comes to passing job history and the lack of dates associated with previous positions.


The conclusion is that chronological resumes and functional resumes both have their advantages and drawbacks, and it’s important to choose the right format for your personal profile. Writing a resume in the proper format can create a good impression on employers and is essential for any job seeker. A chronological resume is best used when applicants have steady work experience in the same field and can clearly demonstrate a career trajectory.

Functional resumes are better suited for applicants who may have gaps in their career history or those with transferable skills. Both types of resumes can be effective when crafted correctly. Depending on the employer and the job position that you are applying for, both chronological and functional resumes can be an effective way of showcasing your qualifications and experiences to potential employers.

However, it is important to take into account the reader’s perspective, as well as the specific requirements of the job you are applying for, in order to determine which type of resume would have the most impact.