The most common mistake made by those who are putting together a resume or cv, is choosing an inappropriate resume format or cv format. For example, if you have only worked at one position for one employer for the entirety of your employment history but have been promoted within , then it would be a mistake to choose a resume format that only lists your former employers. The result will be a rather blank page. Conversely, if you have worked in lateral positions for many employers, you will want to list all of your employers in a fashion that emphasizes a positive reason for making the move to the next employer.
The following are the three most popular resume formats:
- Chronological – this is by far the most popular and the one used by many employers when they require that you complete an application/resume on-line. It starts with the most recent employment and works back. Not the resume you want to use when you have only had one or two jobs.
- Functional – this resume format details your skills and abilities and how they have been used in your prior or current employment. If you have worked at many jobs with the same set of skills, you will probably not want to use this format.
- Combined – the best or worst of both worlds. Many prospective employees use this format when it would really be best to choose one of the above and do it well.
CV formats are a little trickier since they require that you try to think like your prospective employer. One of the most common mistakes people make is using the same cv format with each potential employer. With a cv the employer needs to be able to see immediately why you are the right candidate for the job.