There are four different types of job resume formats that can be used: chronological, targeted, functional and combination. The chronological resume format is used most often, and employers tend to prefer this format, as noted by America's Job Exchange. The applicant's work experience is listed with the most recent position at the top in this resume format, and each preceding employment position follows in chronological order.
In some cases, the best approach is to focus on the applicant's skills rather than presenting a chronological employment history. A functional resume format is then used to highlight the applicant's skills by placing them at the top of the resume, typically in a bullet format. Work experience then follows as a back up, but does not need be either inclusive or in chronological order. The functional format works well to highlight skills that are not fully supported by an actual employment history, as advised by Money Instructor.
When a specific position is being sought, usually within a precisely defined field or industry, a targeted resume is the best approach. Targeted resumes are tailored for the position being applied for and each resume submission is fine-tuned to match the individual job requirements. Key terms from the job posting may be inserted into the resume text to demonstrate that the applicant is a particularly good match to the specific position being applied for. A customized targeted resume should, however, remain accurate and should not include anything inserted only for the sake of demonstrating a match between the job and the applicant, as cautioned by America's Job Exchange. A combination resume is a targeted format that combines elements of both the chronological and the functional formats in a manner that best suits the specific position being applied for.