Functional Resumes: Why They Don’t Work

Posted on February 6, 2012. Filed under: Resumes | Tags: , , , |

Functional Resume

What HR really does with all those resumes

by Stephen Van Vreede (@ITtechExec) 

A recent article posted by TheLadders.com (http://www.theladders.com/career-advice/what-employers-really-think-about-functional-resumes) hits the mark regarding functional resumes. It’s quite simple: They do not work.

This is especially true for the technical candidate.

Recruiters, HR reps, hiring managers, and anyone else reading a functional resume thinks that the candidate must be hiding something. Why? Because they usually are. Most people who want to get back into a certain industry or position type that have been off the radar for a while use a functional style so that whatever experience they had (however little or however old) does not get buried where an employer won’t see it. The trouble is, they won’t care anyway if they see it in a functional format.

You are better served providing some highlights of the experience, skills, etc. that you think make you a solid candidate for the position up in the summary area and effectively stating your value proposition on the cover letter than trying to wrestle with a functional format.

Of course, many people feel they are the exception, and there are times when a semi-functional format can have merit. But that is where having professional advice should come in. As a general rule, however, especially in the technical sector, a chronological resume is the way to go. (Check out more tips on writing a technical resume.)

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